Local psychologist among more than 400 charged with health care fraud

She's one of more than 400 doctors, nurses and health care professionals arrested this week.

DECATUR, Ga. -- A DeKalb County psychologist is among the 412 doctors, nurses and health care professionals arrested in the largest ever bust of its kind in U.S. history.

The crackdown on Medicaid fraud targets those accused of ripping off more than a billion dollars.

Federal investigators said Halisi Staten, the owner and operator of the Georgia Center for Health, Wellness and Recovery, along with one of her employees were ripping off Medicaid to the tune of thousands of dollars since 2011.

► Jeff Sessions: 400 medical professionals charged in largest health care fraud takedown

According to federal documents obtained by 11Alive, Staten and her employee Kim Bray allegedly submitted thousands of bogus Medicaid claims that weren't provided and weren't legitimate.

The indictment in federal court filed this week said Staten hired Bray in 2010. However, Bray failed a criminal background check and wasn't allowed to work with Medicaid payments.

But federal investigators said the pair have been ripping off Medicaid since 2010.

"Too many trusted medical professionals like doctors and nurses and pharmacists have chosen to violate their oaths and put greed ahead of their patients," said U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions. "We are sending a clear message to criminals across this country: We will find you, we will bring you to justice, and you will pay a very high price for what you have done."

11Alive called multiple numbers listed for Staten and her business but there were no answers. It's not clear if either suspect has an attorney at this time.

© 2017 WXIA-TV


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