Ex-owner of Lexington group home pleads guilty to fraud and forgery charges

Enters program as part of agreement

vhoneycutt@herald-leader.comNovember 11, 2011 

The former owner of a Lexington group home that has closed pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of Medicaid fraud and forgery, Attorney General Jack Conway's office said in a statement.

Irvin Smith Jr. was indicted in October. He entered guilty pleas in Fayette Circuit Court on Thursday to one count of Medicaid fraud and three counts of second-degree forgery, all felonies, the statement said.

As part of a plea agreement, the court placed Smith in a felony pretrial diversion program for five years.

He would face imprisonment for a recommended period of three years if he violates the terms and conditions of the program.

Smith also must register for 150 hours of community service a year for five years, and he may not seek expungement of the charges or the record in the case, the statement said.

Irvco LLC, the company Smith owned, also entered a guilty plea to Medicaid fraud. As part of the plea, Irvco must pay a $5,000 fine. Like Smith, Irvco may not seek expungement of the charge or the record in the case, the attorney general's statement said.

The Attorney General's Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control began an investigation after an investigation by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services' Office of the Inspector General into allegations that Smith falsified documentation related to tuberculosis testing and first aid and CPR training.

Kentucky regulations require that a supports for community living provider maintain documentation of each staff person's annual tuberculosis risk assessment or negative tuberculosis test, and that employees receive first aid and CPR training.

Reach Valarie Honeycutt Spears at (859) 231-3409 or 1-800-950-6397, Ext. 3409.

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