SHREVEPORT, La. (KTVE/KARD) — United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown of the United States Attorney’s Office Western District of Louisiana announced that Marty T. Johnson, Owner of Counseling Agency (Positive Change) and Keesha Dinkins who operated the role of Supervising Manager of the agency were both sentenced on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 by United States District Judge Donald E. Walter in connection with a healthcare fraud and wire fraud scheme they were involved in.
According to the press release Johnson, 59, of Shreveport, was sentenced to 60 months in prison, followed by 1 year of supervised release. Dinkins, 45, of Bossier City, was sentenced to 24 months in prison,
followed by 1 year of supervised release. In addition, Johnson and Dinkins were ordered to
jointly pay restitution in the amount of $3,500,000.
On October 26, 2021, Johnson and Dinkins each entered guilty pleas in connection with the case. According to information presented to the court, Johnson owned and operated Positive Change Counseling Agency (Positive Change) located in Shreveport, Louisiana, from January 2013 to January 2018. Keesha Dinkins was a manager and supervisor at Positive Change. Positive Change provided mental health rehabilitation and related services to Medicaid beneficiaries in the Caddo and Bossier Parish areas.
In the case, Johnson admitted to paying individuals money to enroll with Positive Change, increasing the capacity for Positive Change to bill Medicaid for services that were not offered. Johnson operated his agency to use Medicaid recipients’ names and identification information without their knowledge or consent to submit fraudulent claims for mental health rehabilitation and non-emergency transportation.
In addition, Johnson and Dinkins supervised and knowingly instructed the employees at Positive Change that were creating these false client files to place the false and fictitious photocopied, cut and pasted, documents into the client files. This was done in act to conceal from Medicaid and insurance company auditors and inspectors that it had not performed the services related to its previously submitted claims which had already been reimbursed by Medicaid.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services– Office of Inspector General, Louisiana State Attorney General’s Office-Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Earl M. Campbell prosecuted the case.