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Va AG probing Richmond Medicaid fraud sting video

- Associated Press - Thursday, July 21, 2011

RICHMOND — Virginia's attorney general and Richmond city authorities are investigating a video showing a government worker advising a man posing as a wealthy Russian drug dealer not to note his criminal activities on a Medicaid application.

The undercover video, shot July 1, appeared Thursday on conservative activist James O'Keefe's Project Veritas website. The group earlier this week posted similar undercover videos made at Medicaid offices in Ohio, New York and South Carolina.

The most recent covert video shows a social services worker in Richmond's Medicaid office counseling a man speaking in a Russian accent to omit what he had told her about his fictional drug trafficking and prostitution activities.

"No, you just leave that off your application," she says, laughing nervously. "Don't put that on there."

"And would I just put, like self-employed," the impostor asks.

"Yes," she responds.

The man, using a Russian-sounding alias, had told the worker he drives a car worth more than $800,000 with a gold-plated engine, owns a yacht and has a helipad. He tells the employee he is seeking Medicaid enrollment for his father and that his family's enterprises are "off the books."

Neither the video nor the Project Veritas website says whether the employee reported the incident to her supervisors or to law enforcement. There was no response to a telephone message left Thursday afternoon for Richmond Social Services director Doris Moseley.

Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II watched the video, found it "troubling" and ordered his Medicaid Fraud unit to investigate, said Brian Gottstein, Mr. Cuccinelli's press secretary.

Gov. Bob McDonnell asked the State Police to review it, said administration spokesman J. Tucker Martin.

Michael Wallace, a spokesman for Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones, said the city is "investigating this matter to determine the validity of the tape and the information. We will handle this matter as needed through the established disciplinary channels."

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