- Associated Press - Thursday, July 13, 2017

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Five people in Iowa are among more than 400 people charged with taking part in health care fraud and opioid scams that federal prosecutors say totaled $1.3 billion in false billing across the country.

U.S. Attorney Kevin VanderSchel in the Southern District of Iowa says the five were indicted in two schemes involving the distribution of opioids. He says 47-year-old Shawne Marie Widener, of Hamburg, is charged with multiple counts of possession with intent to distribute hydrocodone and oxycodone. Charged with conspiracy and distribution of the drugs are 31-year-old Mark Edward May; 32-year-old Chiann May Jones; 37-year-old Clara Ann Milks; and 40-year-old Jeremiah Jones, all of Missouri Valley.

Federal public defender Michael Lee Smart said Thursday that it’s too early to comment on how the Iowa defendants will plead.


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