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Government Ill-Equipped to Prevent Medicaid Fraud, Says False Claims Act Expert
Date:7/14/2008

AUSTIN, Texas, July 14 /PRNewswire/ -- In response to last week's widely reported story about Medicaid fraud by medical supplies companies that billed the government for services prescribed by dead physicians, Patrick O'Connell of Baron & Budd, P.C., also the former head of the Texas Attorney General's Civil Medicaid Fraud Section, has called for greater support for state and federal legal enforcement bodies in the prosecution of such cases.

"This is a situation where the government's ability to enforce the law and to prevent fraud suffers due to insufficient resources and manpower," said O'Connell. "Hundreds of millions of the taxpayer's hard-earned dollars are being stolen and will continue to be, until the government gets the legal support it needs to identify and prosecute those who are defrauding it."

In 2007, O'Connell received the Honest Abe Integrity in Government Award from Taxpayers Against Fraud for making Texas a leader in curbing fraud through the use of a state False Claims Act. During his eight year tenure with the Attorney General's office, his staff recovered over $200 million in stolen funds claims. O'Connell is currently working with a number of other state attorney generals offices to initiate anti-fraud litigation.

About Baron & Budd, P.C.

For more than 30 years, the law firm of Baron & Budd, P.C. has championed the rights of people and communities harmed by corporate misconduct. With more than 50 attorneys and offices in California, Texas and Louisiana, Baron & Budd enjoys a national reputation as a leader of the plaintiffs' bar. The firm represents individuals with mesothelioma and other diseases caused by asbestos; leukemia caused by benzene; injuries caused by other toxic substances and unsafe pharmaceuticals; water authorities seeking clean-up costs for drinking water contamination; government entities and whistleblowers fighting corporate fraud; securities investors defrauded by corporate wrongdoing; and consumers in class actions.

Contact:

Susan Jones Knape

214/629-0596

Sknape@baronbudd.com

Christal Karnaze

703/615-5763

christalkarnaze@lmo.com


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SOURCE Baron & Budd, P.C.
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