|May 21, 2015
Contact: Whitney Ray
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office and the Osceola County Probation and Parole Services today arrested two Osceola County women for allegedly billing the Medicaid program for more than $94,000 in fraudulent services.
According to the investigation, Lynda Gonsalves-Barnes and Jessica Allen, fraudulently billed the Medicaid program for mental health targeted case management services that were never provided. Barnes, owner of Omega Alpha Nu Ministries, allegedly used recipients’ personal identification to fraudulently submit claims without the recipients’ knowledge. Some recipients never even heard of Omega Alpha Nu Ministries prior to the investigation. The investigation also revealed that most recipients were not qualified to receive mental health targeted case management services, and those who were qualified did not receive the needed help.
Allen, who worked as Barnes’ executive assistant, was implicated after the investigation revealed that she created false service logs and approved billing for services to recipients, including billing for her own children and the children of other employees. Allen did not provide these services nor was she qualified to provide services under the Medicaid program.
Barnes faces charges of Medicaid fraud, a second degree felony, and criminal use of personal identification, a first degree felony. Allen faces two counts of Medicaid fraud. The Osceola County State Attorney’s office will prosecute the case.
The Attorney General's MFCU investigates providers that intentionally defraud the state's Medicaid program through fraudulent billing practices. Additionally, the MFCU investigates allegations of patient abuse, neglect, and exploitation in facilities receiving payments under the Medicaid program. From January 2011 to November 2014, Attorney General Bondi's MFCU has obtained more than $466 million in settlements and judgments.