Lansing area doctor charged with four felonies for overprescribing opioids

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A doctor has been charged with four felony counts of Medicaid Fraud after overprescribing opioids to an undercover special agent.

After receiving a tip, the Attorney General’s Health Care Fraud Division set-up an undercover investigation.

Allegedly the doctor wrote several prescriptions for a pain killer called Norco even though the patient who was an undercover special agent did not indicate any pain or injury.

Dr. Steven Owens has been charged with one felony count of Medicaid Fraud False Claim which has a maximum sentence of four years in prison and a $50,000 fine. The physician was also charged with three felony counts of Medicaid Fraud – Medically Unnecessary which has a maximum sentence of four years and $50,000 fine as well.

“There is an opioid epidemic going on in this country and almost every Michigan resident knows someone who is affected by it,” said Attorney General Nessel.  “While the vast majority of physicians are ethical in how they use opioids, our Health Care Fraud Division is working tirelessly to find those prescribers who are contributing to the problem.”

Although Dr. Steven Owens is a physician in Mason, Michigan law states the Attorney General can file Medicaid Fraud charges in any court, these files were charged in Ingham County.

Owens was arraigned in an East Lansing District Court today and given a $5,000 personal recognizance bond.

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