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Preston hospital worker pleads guilty to insurance fraud

Crime Watch

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The following is a news release from Attorney General Lawrence Wasden.

PRESTON — Attorney General Lawrence Wasden has announced a Franklin County woman was sentenced Thursday, Nov. 14, for insurance fraud.

46-year-old Tara S. Harris, of Preston, pleaded guilty to one count in September.

Sixth District Court Judge Mitchell Brown withheld judgement and sentenced Harris to three years probation. The judge also ordered 120 days in jail and suspended 116. The court ordered Harris to serve 30 days of house arrest following the conclusion of her four days in jail. The defendant was also ordered to pay a $750 fine, $800 for public defender reimbursement, $1,881 in restitution to the Idaho Department of Insurance, and court costs. Finally, Harris is required to complete 100 hours of community service.

An investigation revealed that as an insurance biller at a local hospital, Harris submitted false insurance claims to AFLAC Accident Insurance from November 2015 to May 2016. These false claims were submitted using real medical records she obtained through her employment. Harris modified these records so that it appeared members of her family had received treatment. As a result of these claims, AFLAC paid Harris benefits she was not entitled to.

The Idaho Department of Insurance investigated. Deputy Attorney General Jessica Cafferty in the Attorney General’s Special Prosecutions Unit prosecuted the case.

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