On September 26, the Department of Justice announced Donald Booker, 57, received a nearly 17-year prison sentence for defrauding the North Carolina Medicaid program. Booker’s co-defendant, Delores Jordan, 55, pleaded guilty last year and is still awaiting sentencing. 

According to evidence presented at trial, Booker owned United Diagnostic Laboratories (UDL), a urine toxicology testing lab, and United Youth Care Services (UYCS), a provider of mental health and substance abuse treatment services. Jordan owned Legacy Housing, a subsidized housing development. Booker purportedly paid Jordan in exchange for her sending urine samples from her tenants to Booker’s lab, with “kickbacks” coming from his Medicare reimbursements. According to the indictment filed in February 2022, Booker received over $15 million in reimbursements from Medicare and Medicaid for drug tests that the government has deemed “medically unnecessary” and transferred $1.6 million to Jordan.

In January, a federal Jury found Booker guilty of conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud, multiple Anti-Kickback Statute violations, money laundering conspiracy, and money laundering. In December of 2022, Jordan pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy.

Despite Booker’s request for a reduced sentence, Judge Bell sentenced him to two hundred months in prison and ordered him to pay $11.8 million in restitution. Prosecutors argued that Booker’s situation differed significantly from his co-defendants who accepted “responsibility for their actions.”

Cases like these highlight the crucial role of a strong defense team in the realm of healthcare fraud and government investigations. These cases are complex, often involving a myriad of regulations, statutes, and intricate legal processes. Healthcare fraud cases, particularly those tied to government programs such as Medicaid and Medicare, require a depth of legal expertise and experience that only a proficient defense team can provide.

The attorneys at Chilivis Grubman represent healthcare clients of all types and sizes in connection with government investigations (both criminal and civil) and regulatory matters, including matters involving the DOJ and HHS-OIG.  If you need assistance with such a matter, please contact us today.