Local News

Dunn couple appears in court on Medicaid, tax fraud charges

Posted June 25, 2012

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— A Dunn husband and wife were in federal court Monday on charges that they defrauded taxpayers of nearly $600,000 through their home health care business.

John Curtis Alspaugh, 61, and Helen Blue Alspaugh, 56, are accused of using their Dunn-based business, Basic Home Health Care Inc., to submit 3,518 false Medicaid claims, totaling $141,430, from January 2006 to April 2011.

Federal investigators say the couple also withheld more than $458,000 in tax money from their 130-plus employees’ paychecks, but never paid the IRS.

The company provided living assistance services, such as bathing and dispensing medication at patients’ homes. An indictment alleges the couple used Medicaid ID numbers of dead people, people in prison and former clients who once received personal care services from the company.

“Fraudulent claims were billed for services that the Alspaughs knew had not been provided,” according to a statement from the Department of Justice.

John Alspaugh is also accused of using a person’s Medicaid and other identity number to commit health care fraud, from Jan. 5, 2008, to Sept. 3, 2009, and from Sept. 22, 2006 to March 17, 2008, according to the Department of Justice.

John and Helen Alspaugh are each charged with conspiring to defraud the U.S. and eight counts of failure to truthfully account for and pay over withholding and Social Security taxes. John Alspaugh is also charged with 16 counts of health care fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft.

They had no comment after Monday’s court hearing, which was an initial appearance and dealt with procedural items relating to the case.

The Alspaughs will get public defenders to represent them, and each charge they face carries a maximum penalty of two to 10 years in prison, plus a $250,000 fine. Their next court date has not been set.

30 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • ladyblue Jun 26, 2012

    aN AMERICAN WHO WORKS HARD THEIR LIFE,AND IS DISABLED.But since they get disibility a GOVERNMENT check,the medicaid system counts that in each month and determines if they are getting too much

    yes someone needs to file a discriminaiton law suit on age difference on the money issue. If you work hard all your life retire after 65 or get disables later in life after working for decades, you will get social security and that income counts as income and you get nothing worth wasting time on.BUT IF YOU WERE LAZY or not showing wages on a social security number then your income is considered ZERO, even if you draw almost the same amount in SSI. (income for folks who didnt work enough to draw SS). So the younger person who is not of retirement age orworked under table, can get a few hundred a month in foodstamps for free drawing almost same money from government while the older worker who worked and has to claim their SS income gets nothing or or under 20 dollars a month.

  • ladyblue Jun 26, 2012

    Now they need to audit other counties on those contracted carriers that are taking welfare patients to doctors. There is one near us that has also gone from driving personal older vehicles to driving escalades Suv'sand even built a million dollar mansion. People say they have seen them bill medicaid to take teenage kids from school to pt after school job.

  • mom32 Jun 26, 2012

    THE DHHS IS AT FAULT, BUT PLEASE TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION THAT THEY ARE SHORT STAFFED DUE TO BUDGET CUTS. PEOPLE LIKE THE BLUE'S WHO WALK AROUND AND LOOK AND TALK TO YOU LIKE YOU ARE WAY BENEATH THEM KNEW WHAT THEY WERE DOING. THEY LOOKED VERY DIFFERENT ON TV YESTERDAY THEN THEY DO IN PERSON SHE WAS NOT DRIPPING IN GOLD AND DIAMOND JEWELERY, NEITHER WAS HE. AND SHE DIDN'T HAVE ON HER DESIGNER CLOTHES AND SHOES, WONDER IF THEY WERE DRIVING THE JAG, BMW, CADILAC OR LINCOLN. MAYBE IT WAS THE BMW GOLF CART THEY WENT TO COURT IN. THEY KNEW WHAT THEY WERE DOING AND DON'T DESERVE A PUBLIC DEFENDER. LET THEM SELL A CAR OR PIECE OF JEWELERY TO PAY FOR THIER REPRESENTATION. THEY CAN AFFORD IT.

  • Uhavenoclu Jun 26, 2012

    "I don't understand how people think this is DHHS's fault or that the system is broken. First, these people were CAUGHT. The system worked.

    Second, the vast majority of the money wasn't related to DHHS activities at all. It was tax fraud.

    happymom"

    Sorry to put a frown on you happymom,but it is not working..You see the reason why when you go to work every morning at the social services and all the ones in their who cannot speak English..They even have translators working there to translate to the people..There is the problem...$16.00 a month for someone for a month is a joke,you can't get a pizza for that amount,AN AMERICAN WHO WORKS HARD THEIR LIFE,AND IS DISABLED.But since they get disibility a GOVERNMENT check,the medicaid system counts that in each month and determines if they are getting too much.BOTH GOVERNMENT AGENCIES..NOT EARNED INCOME BUT GOVERNMENT,AND SHOULD NOT COUNT.
    While these illegals are claiming 20 kids living in a 1 bedroom apartment get thousands a month.

  • GodBless Jun 26, 2012

    This is ridiculous! I am the legal guardian and caregiver for my 41 year old brother. He lives with us. I am "audited" at least twice a month! These people got away with this for years! HOW did this happen? Where are the people that get paid by our tax dollars to follow up on this? The gov't continues to dole out money to people that are lazy good-for-nothing trash! Yet, my brother gets a grand total of $16.00 a month in food stamps. I have to document everything! And believe me when I say that I am monitored! I am so upset about this! The system needs to be fixed!

  • YeaOh Jun 25, 2012

    There would be plenty of funds for social services if this type thing were aggressively pursued and punished. There too many people who know how to work the system and too many govt employees looking the other way.

  • Scubagirl Jun 25, 2012

    "I don't understand how people think this is DHHS's fault or that the system is broken. First, these people were CAUGHT. The system worked.

    Second, the vast majority of the money wasn't related to DHHS activities at all. It was tax fraud.

    happymom"

    um happymom.....the system IS broken, has been for a while and DHHS is also broken. Both need to be fixed. Just because this couple was caught doesn't mean things are working as they should, it only means they caught this one couple. Baby steps I guess.

  • Rolling Along Jun 25, 2012

    Same old, same old every day. They most likely will get bargained down to probation and restitution for pennies on the dollar.

  • wildlifeprocessing Jun 25, 2012

    Defrauded for $600,000 and they still need public defenders? They should be made to pay for their legal representation or go without!!

  • SailbadTheSinner Jun 25, 2012

    Five will get you ten that these fine individuals are out on bail, happily running another home health care business....

    STS

More...