Former physician, wife plead guilty in $2.3M fraud scheme

A former physician who owned three clinics in Alabama and her wife pleaded guilty to their roles in a $2.3 million scheme. 

Francene Gayle, 50, of Apopka, Fla., pleaded guilty to five counts of five counts of unlawful drug distribution, one count of healthcare fraud conspiracy, and one count of wire fraud conspiracy, according to a June 10. Her wife, Schara Davis, 48, pleaded guilty to one count of healthcare fraud conspiracy and one count of wire fraud conspiracy. Ms. Davis operated the clinics as business manager. 

Over a five-year period, Medicare, Medicaid and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama paid more than $2.3 million for office visits billed under Ms. Gayle's name even when she did not see the patients, according to the release. 

Ms. Gayle also admitted to unlawfully distributing drugs, including oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone, according to the release. 

Ms. Gayle had her Alabama medical license revoked in 2020, according to the release. Months later, she and Ms. Davis applied for and received more than $450,000 in COVID-19 disaster relief funds. The clinics, however, had closed and they used the funds on other things. 

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