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Guilty plea entered in Medicaid fraud case

101617 Ashley Michelle Sawyer



The Daily Reflector

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

A former speech and language pathologist received a 30-day suspended jail sentence and 12 months unsupervised probation after pleading guilty to attempted Medicaid provider fraud, according to a Monday news release from the N.C. Attorney General’s Office.

Ashley Sawyer, who was arrested and charged in late October, entered her plea Monday in Wake County, the release said. Sawyer also was ordered to pay $8,241.16 in restitution to her employer and court costs.

“Billing Medicaid for services not rendered pushes up the cost of the program and wastes taxpayer money,” said Attorney General Stein. “My office will not allow this type of abuse to occur.”

The release said Sawyer’s conviction resolves allegations that she submitted time sheets outlining speech therapy and treatment services to 13 Medicaid recipients in Pitt County between January 9, 2015 and September 18, 2015. The Attorney General’s Office said Sawyer did not provide the services.

Sawyer’s employer, who was not identified, has reimbursed the Medicaid program for those false claims and she will repay her employer.

According to an earlier news reporter Sawyer’s license as a speech-language pathologist was suspended on Dec. 4, 2015. She was working as an East Carolina University administrative support specialist when she was arrested by the State Bureau of Investigation in Raleigh on Tuesday on accusations medical provider fraud.