Georgia Woman Charged 2nd Time with TennCare Fraud
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Georgia woman is charged with TennCare fraud for a second time.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Brandi Nicole Rolen, also known as Brandi Nicole Johnson, 29, of Oglethorpe, Georgia. She is charged by a grand jury in Hamilton County with TennCare fraud and theft of services over $60,000.
Authorities say Rolen-Johnson falsely reported to the state that she, her fiancé and their two children all resided in Tennessee, although they were residents of Oglethorpe, Georgia. Rolen-Johnson received $117,306.90 in TennCare benefits for which she was not eligible. The case is being prosecuted by District Attorney General Neal Pinkston.
Rolen-Johnson was first arrested in June after a Knox County Grand Jury indicted her for TennCare fraud theft of services over $10,000. District Attorney General Charme P. Allen will be prosecuting this case.
“We will prosecute anyone we find who misrepresents their income, address or family make up in order to gain TennCare benefits,” Inspector General Manny Tyndall said. “Tennessee taxpayers have made it clear they want to see people prosecuted, especially for lying about their residency in order to obtain TennCare benefits – no matter how much or little benefits they may have used. Our defined role is to preserve the integrity of TennCare and we’re committed to doing so.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony punishable by up to two years in prison per charge.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to more than $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,880 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 visit the website and follow the prompts that read “Report TennCare Fraud.”