Former Vt. Agency Official Sentenced for Medicaid Fraud; Agency Gets $50,000 from Insurer to Cover Some Losses

August 25, 2004

Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell announced that William J. Crayford, 45, of Whitingham, was sentenced in Vermont District Court for Windham County on a charge of Medicaid Fraud stemming from his former employment as executive director of Families First, an agency serving disabled children and their families in the Wilmington area.

Crayford had reportedly lied to Medicaid about services to disabled children that he said were provided from June, 1998 through March, 2000, by Family Solutions, a for-profit organization owned by him, instead of by Families First, the not-for-profit agency that actually provided the services. The result was that Medicaid payments were made to Family Solutions instead of to Families First.

According to papers filed in court, the deception resulted in Crayford failing to pass through to Families First Medicaid payments that were received on its behalf by Family Solutions. As part of the plea agreement which resolved the case, in return for Crayford’s no contest plea to one count of Medicaid Fraud the Attorney General’s Office dismissed two counts of Embezzlement from Families First.

Crayford was sentenced to make restitution to Families First of all its uninsured losses, plus restitution to the Vermont Medicaid program. He paid $30,000 on the date of sentencing, and was ordered to pay at least $500 a month and $12,000 a year until the balance is paid off. amounting to a total of $89,105.31. Families First also had received $50,000 from an insurer to cover some of its losses.

Vermont law does not permit a court to order restitution in a criminal case to pay back an insurer. In addition to restitution, Crayford was sentenced to five to 10 years, all suspended except for 30 days to be served on pre-approved furlough on the work crew, plus 200 hours of community service. He will be required to report his conviction to any prospective employers.

As a result of the conviction, federal regulations will exclude Crayford for at least five years from employment in any capacity funded directly or indirectly by Medicare or Medicaid.

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