2 to repay more than $1M in medical fraud scheme

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by ELIZABETH THOMAS / WCNC.com

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WCNC.com

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 1:33 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 5 at 1:39 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Two local women were sentenced to prison and ordered to pay restitution totaling more than a million dollars for their roles in a scheme to defraud federal medical systems, and their employers.

Karen Wills, 43, of Salisbury, was sentenced to 97 months in prison on Friday. Chief U.S. District Court Judge Robert J. Conrad, Jr. also ordered Wills to pay more than $780,000 in restitution to Medicaid, Medicare and Medco Health Solutions. 

Wills' co-conspirator, Wendy Gibson, 40, of Charlotte, was sentenced to four years in prison, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $358,330, as well, to Medicaid, Medicare and Medco Health Solutions.

Both women entered guilty pleas in January of this year to one count each of healthcare fraud conspiracy, paying and receiving illegal kickbacks and conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. 

According to information presented during the trial process, the women's kickback scheme involved taking illegal kickbacks for fictitious patient referrals for power wheelchairs. 

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