NASHVILLE, TN – A Giles County man is charged with using drugs he purchased using TennCare benefits to manufacture crystal methamphetamine, a street drug that’s been a primary target of concern by state officials and police officers.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Giles County Sheriff’s Department, today announced the arrest of John B. Robinson, 32, of Pulaski. He is charged with TennCare fraud, and accused of using TennCare benefits to obtain a prescription drug that contains pseudoephedrine, a precursor in the manufacture of methamphetamine. Charges say he then used the prescription to make methamphetamine.
The Giles County Sheriff’s Department also charged him with one count of manufacturing meth, one count of drug paraphernalia, and one count of child abuse.
“This type of criminal activity will absolutely not be tolerated in the state of Tennessee,” stated Inspector General Deborah Faulkner. “Prescription drug fraud is against the law—the Office of Inspector General will continue to aggressively go after anyone who commits TennCare fraud. This case is especially egregious.”
The TennCare fraud charge against Robinson could result in a two year sentence if convicted. District Attorney General Mike Bottoms is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $173 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,700 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.
Through the OIG Cash for Tips Program established by the Legislature, Tennesseans can get cash rewards for TennCare fraud tips that lead to convictions. Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tn.gov/tnoig and follow the prompts that read “Report TennCare Fraud.”