MACCLENNY, Fla. -- A Macclenny doctor is behind bars facing charges of fraud.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Baker County Sheriff's Office, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General and the Florida Department of Health were involved in the investigation that led to the arrest of 76-year-old Dr. Charles Scarborough, according to a news release from FDLE.
Police arrested Scarborough for one count of organized scheme to defraud over $50,000, a first-degree felony and 821 counts of false or fraudulent insurance claims, a third-degree felony.
The release said law enforcement began to investigate Scarborough in late 2011. Scarborough was identified as a significant prescriber of controlled substances in northeast Florida.
According to investigators, evidence was discovered that allegedly links Scarborough to over prescribing medications to patients. Scarborough also allegedly allowed unlicensed and untrained staff members to practice medicine.
The release said Scarborough would then direct the employees to inflate medical billing to Medicare, Medicaid and private insurers for service levels the patient did not receive.
Investigators conducted interviews with these employees which showed Scarborough, who is a sole practitioner, would push the untrained staff members to see 50 patients or more in a day. These untrained staff members would then bill the patients for medical issues they never addressed and for treatment they never received. The release said Scarborough's goal was to maximize his profit.
Baker County Sheriff Joey Dobson said, "We are pleased with the cooperative effort between the Baker County Sheriff's Office, FDLE and all of the other governmental agencies whose efforts culminated with this arrest."
"This is a prime example of law enforcement teaming together to remove a major violator from our community," said Dominick Pape, Special Agent in Charge of FDLE's Jacksonville Region. "This level of fraud has to be attacked by a team effort to be successful."
While law enforcement investigated Scarborough, his medical license was suspended by the Florida Department of Health through an Emergency Suspension Order.
Scarborough was booked into the Clay County Jail. His case is being prosecuted by the Attorney General's Office of Statewide Prosecution.
First Coast News