Friday, May 26, 2006

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Houston Woman Gets 50-Year Sentence Following Trial For Medicaid Fraud

HOUSTON – Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today lauded a Harris County jury and judge following a 50-year sentence handed down Thursday against a previously convicted felon who bilked the Medicaid system of over $1 million in a fraudulent chemical dependency counseling operation.

Doris Jean Blake, 60, of Houston was ordered to repay the government the funds she illegally skimmed over several years while operating Help Helping Each Other Live Positive, a chemical dependency counseling “service.”

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Doris Jean Blake
Doris Jean Blake

“This harsh but just sentence goes to show just how seriously the public and the judicial system take these kinds of crimes,” said Attorney General Abbott. “I thank Harris County District Attorney and his prosecutors for their hard work in bringing this criminal to justice. We will not rest until all such frauds see their day in court.”

Blake was arrested last September after Attorney General Abbott’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and Harris County District Attorney’s Office obtained an indictment from a grand jury, followed by an arrest warrant. She has been incarcerated in the Harris County Jail under $250,000 bond. On parole at the time of her arrest, Blake has been previously arrested for numerous crimes, including robbery, theft, forgery and prostitution.

From September 2001 to December 2003, Blake routinely billed Medicaid for counseling services she never rendered. She accomplished this by providing counseling under contract with several licensed professional counselors (LPC), focusing on Medicaid clients. She used the LPCs’ provider numbers to bill Medicaid for nonexistent counseling services for the more than two-year period.

Harris County Assistant District Attorney Kay Lynn Willford prosecuted Blake, based on the extensive investigation conducted by the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit officers.

To obtain more information about the Attorney General’s efforts to fight Medicaid fraud, access the agency’s Web site at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov.