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Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of the Attorney General

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For media inquiries only, contact:  Brian J. Gottstein
Email: bgottstein@oag.state.va.us (best contact method)
Phone: 804-786-5874

Peter Carr       
Public Information Officer
Phone: 703-842-4050
E-mail: usavae.press@usdoj.gov
Website: www.usdoj.gov/usao/vae

Further Information Contact:
Laura Taylor
Phone: 804-819-5400

 "Protecting Virginia's Most Vulnerable Citizens"

 

United States Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Virginia
United States Attorney Neil H. MacBride

 Joint release from Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and U.S. Attorney Neil MacBride...

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                      

Mental health service provider pleads guilty to conspiracy to commit health care fraud

RICHMOND (August 13, 2012) - Today, a Richmond-based mental health service provider plead guilty to conspiracy to commit health care fraud for billing Medicaid for services that were not reimbursable because the services did not address a child's specific mental health issues, were not provided by qualified mental health workers, and were not provided to children who were in actual need of the offered service. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia Neil MacBride announced that Joseph T. Hackett, 31, of Asheville, N.C., plead guilty to one count of Conspiracy to Commit Health Care Fraud after the plea was accepted by United States District Judge Henry E. Hudson.

Hackett faces a maximum penalty of five years of imprisonment when he is sentenced on November 13, 2012.  He also agreed to pay $1,570,041 in restitution to the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS), the state agency charged with overseeing the Medicaid program in Virginia.

Hackett admitted that he owned and operated Access Regional Taskforce (ART), a Richmond-based Medicaid contracted provider of intensive in-home therapy services for children and adolescents, one of the many mental health services offered by Medicaid in Virginia. Intensive in-home therapy services are designed to assist youth and adolescents who are at risk of being removed from their homes, or are being returned to their homes after removal, because of significant mental health, behavioral, or emotional issues.  Medicaid requires that intensive in-home therapy providers employ qualified metal health workers to provide a medically necessary service to at-risk children and adolescents.

Hackett, through ART, billed Medicaid for services that were not reimbursable because the services did not address a child's specific mental health issues, were not provided by qualified mental health workers, and were not provided to children who were in actual need of the offered service.  Hackett admitted that Medicaid paid ART at least $1,570,041 that ART was not entitled to receive.  In addition, Hackett paid Creed Xtreme Marketing Concepts, a.k.a. Creed Extreme Marketing, $545,410 for patient referrals.  The owner of Creed, Lorie T. Monroe, was sentenced to 37 months of imprisonment for receiving these referral payments.

The case was investigated by the Virginia attorney general's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Virginia Assistant Attorney General and Special Assistant United States Attorney Joseph E.H. Atkinson and Assistant United States Attorney Jessica Aber Brumberg prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.

Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on https://pcl.uscourts.gov

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A copy of this news release may be found on the attorney general's web site here.

 

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