Baton Rouge criminal defense attorney, Joseph K. Scott, comments on the recent sentencing in federal court of two defendants in health care fraud case.
Online PR News – 20-October-2012 – Baton Rouge, LA – In a recent federal health care fraud case, Eunice Sparrow, age 68, and Uniecesco Smith, age 30, both of Plaquemine, Louisiana, were sentenced to prison for their roles in a two-year long scheme. Sentencing was imposed by federal judge, Chief U.S. District Court Judge Brian A. Jackson, after the defendants accepted plea agreements on June 20.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, The two defendants pled guilty to charges of aiding and abetting a scheme operated by Linda Jackson in February 2012. Sparrow and Smith are the mother and daughter of Linda Jackson, the alleged ring leader of the scheme. The three defendants worked for A & A Durable Medical Supply, creating false Medicare reimbursement claims to the federal government for items that were never provided. After serving their respective imprisonment terms, they are expected to make restitution to the United States Department of Health and Human Services. As a result of her guilty plea, Jackson faces a maximum sentence of a term of imprisonment of 10 years and a large fine. In addition, Jackson has agreed to forfeit all property derived from the proceeds of her crime and to make full restitution. Jackson is currently awaiting sentencing for her part in the fraudulent scheme.
"While working as a Medicare fraud defense attorney, I have seen the multiple layers of state and federal laws that come into play when a person is accused of defrauding the government," said Joseph Scott, a Baton Rouge criminal defense attorney. "Looking at this case, I wonder why the financial charges are limited to restitution and fines, which are included in the fraud charges, rather than charging them with additional counts of financial crimes. On the other hand, the limited charges may be part of a good plea deal by the defense attorney doing damage control."
The United States government is continuing to strictly police the federal health care laws. William Root, the agent in charge of the investigation, at the conclusion of the trial, said, “If you steal from Medicare, we will catch you, and you will go to jail.”
"The plea deal in this case appears to have been carefully structured, and while there is potential for prison sentences for Ms. Sparrow and Ms. Smith, they appear to have avoided a number of severe consequences and upgraded charges," said Scott, "A plea agreement is a contract between the defendant and the United States Attorney's Office, but it is almost always subject to the approval of the Judge. It will be interesting to see if the plea agreement stands or is rejected by Judge Jackson, and what he chooses to do with the flexibility in sentencing that's left to him under the terms of the plea deal."
As a lawyer with experience in the health care fraud defense attorney role, Scott has represented defendants at the state and federal level, assisting them in evaluating the prosecution's case, working to limit or avoid charges, and managing damage control in sentencing where necessary. He has experience representing a wide variety of these charges, including health care fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, money laundering, illegal currency transactions, and related financial criminal charges.
When you need a fraud attorney, you can learn about the services offered by Scott at http://josephkscott.com/. You can also call for a consultation by contacting him at his offices at (225) 381-8080. Offices are located at 830 Main St, Baton Rouge, LA 70802.