Was it something she said? 'Speech therapist' sent to prison, fined

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A North Carolina woman who posed as a licensed speech therapist in two assisted living facilities has been sentenced to 34 months in prison for committing Medicare fraud.

The woman, Darlene Hughes, 53, stole the name and license of a speech therapist and presented herself as such to two long-term care facilities, defrauding the facilities and Medicare for $142,000 in false claims, according to the FBI.

Hughes pleaded guilty to the charges of federal healthcare fraud in August 2010. She will serve her prison sentence without the possibility of parole, and pay $194,000 in restitution.

Hughes' scheme had “a “level of sophistication and skill of deceit that is pretty overwhelming,” said U.S. District Judge Frank D. Whitney during sentencing.
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