On Tuesday, July 29, 2014, a DeKalb County Grand Jury charged Shirley Dorsey, of Lithonia, Ga., with one count of Medicaid Fraud (O.C.G.A. § 49-4-146.1(b)), one count of violating the Georgia Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) (O.C.G.A. § 16-14-4(a)), one count of Theft by Taking (O.C.G.A. § 16-8-2), two counts of Forgery (O.C.G.A. § 16-9-1(a) ), four counts of Identity Theft (O.C.G.A. § 16-9-121) and two counts of False Writings (O.C.G.A. § 16-10-20). Ms. Dorsey is accused of obtaining over $355,000 through the fraudulent billing of Georgia Medicaid.
Ms. Dorsey owned and operated Brighter Futures Learning Center (BFLC) in Decatur, Ga. BFLC was enrolled in the Georgia Medicaid program to provide mental health services to children. The indictment alleges that from October 19, 2010, to March 24, 2014, Ms. Dorsey submitted false claims to Medicaid for $355,232.46, and accepted payments for services that were never provided.
Ms. Dorsey is charged with using the Medicaid numbers of four of her employed contractors without their knowledge for the purpose of submitting false claims. Furthermore, she made false documents and forged the signatures of two of her employed contractors to conceal her activity of submitting fraudulent claims.
Ms. Dorsey is also accused of giving investigators from the Department of Community Health and Medicaid Control Fraud Unit fraudulent patient files with forged documents in attempts to conceal her alleged fraudulent activity.
Medicaid Fraud is punishable by one to ten years in prison and a fine of $10,000. Violation of the RICO Act carries a five to 20 year prison sentence, as well as a fine of up to three times the financial gain realized by those engaged in racketeering activity. Theft by Taking carries a penalty of one to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $100,000. Forgery in the First Degree is punishable by one to ten years imprisonment and a fine of up to $100,000. Identity Theft can result in one to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000. False Writings is punishable by one to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
Assistant Attorney General Henry A. Hibbert is prosecuting the case for the State of Georgia. The case was investigated by Investigator Johnny R. Brooks and Investigator Aaron Cohen of the Medicaid Control Fraud Unit, a division of the Office of the Attorney General. Nurse Auditor Renee Sherwood and Investigator Jonathan D. McGehee initiated the original investigation on behalf of the Georgia Department of Community Health.