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Beshear: Former Eastern Kentucky Suboxone Clinic Doctor Arraigned in Lawrence Circuit Court

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Attorney General Andy Beshear

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Attorney General Andy Beshear (right) and his Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse have announced a former Eastern Kentucky Suboxone clinic doctor has been arraigned in Lawrence Circuit Court.

Dr. Curtis Edens, 57, of Hardeeville, South Carolina, is charged with two counts of Medicaid fraud; one count of improperly prescribing a controlled substance; one count of theft by deception over $500 – all Class D felonies; and four counts of theft by deception over $10,000, Class C felonies.

Edens was indicted by a Lawrence County grand jury May 12, and his pretrial conference is scheduled for Aug. 25.

The allegations involve Edens operating a now closed Lawrence County Suboxone clinic in 2016 and fraudulently charging Medicaid recipients cash for services. Medicaid specifically prohibits providers from billing cash for services that are covered by the program.

Beshear’s office also alleges that in 2011 and 2012 Edens improperly prescribed Suboxone to his patients from his clinic located in Louisa in Lawrence County.

“Substance abuse is the single greatest threat to our Commonwealth,” Beshear said. “The wrongful prescribing of Suboxone is flooding our communities with yet another drug that is killing our children, destroying our families and scarring our neighborhoods. While there are honest, legal Suboxone clinics that provide real and needed treatment in our state, the rogue clinics who value money over lives must be shut down.”

Edens’ case was investigated by the Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse of the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office with vital assistance from the Appalachia HIDTA Diversion Task Force and the Cabinet for Health and Family Service’s Office of the Inspector General, Drug Enforcement and Professional Practices Branch.

The Office of the Attorney General was assisted in the arrest of Edens by the Jasper County Sheriff’s Department in South Carolina on May 12. Edens waived extradition May 15 and was brought to Kentucky for his court hearings.

A charge is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

One of the core missions of Beshear’s is to fight back against the pervasive substance-abuse epidemic and to protect Kentucky’s most vulnerable citizens from abuse and exploitation. Since taking office, Beshear has recovered over $8.5 million for the state through Medicaid provider fraud recoveries. The Attorney General’s tip line for reporting allegations of Medicaid provider fraud is 877-228-7384.

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