The Main Stream

Aug 23, 2011 12:55 PM

Tucson home health care worker charged in fraud

TUCSON - A home health care worker is facing charges stemming from allegations of a large-scale financial fraud on an elderly client, according to the Arizona Attorney General's office.

Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne says that Julianne M. Lane, 45, was charged with 1 count of fraud, schemes and artifices, 3 counts of forgery and one count of theft/financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult. She was indicted by a Pima County grand jury on June 20, 2011.

The action was filed June 20th, in Pima County and is the result of a joint investigation conducted by the Tucson Police Department, the Attorney General's Special Investigations Section and the Attorney General's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit.

Lane was employed by ACT Now, a home health care agency. She was involved with providing in-home health care services to elderly clients. Over the course of seven months Lane is alleged to have forged numerous checks belonging to an elderly patient. The checks total over $20,000. The loss was discovered by a patient's family member after receiving several bank notices for insufficient funds.

"People who are entrusted to care for those who cannot fully care for themselves have an awesome responsibility and to protect those people, not take advantage of them," Horne said. "I am committed to vigorously prosecuting crimes such as these because preying on our most vulnerable members of society is a terrible injustice and cannot be tolerated."

Ms. Lane is currently pending sentencing in another case where she admitted to forging checks of another elderly victim in 2010. Lane is alleged to have committed the above offenses while she was on release in that felony case. She faces mandatory prison time if she is convicted of the current charges.

If convicted, Lane could be sentenced to 6.5 years to 25 years in prison.

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