A Sebastian County lab owner pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to submitting more than $130 million of Medicare claims for tests that had never been ordered or performed.
Billy Joe Taylor, 43, of Lavaca, admitted that from November 2017 through about May 2021, that he and his co-conspirators received about $38 million from Medicare for the bogus claims, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney David Clay Fowlkes of the Western District of Arkansas.
Five clinical labs that Taylor and his co-conspirators either owned or controlled submitted the false claims. Those labs are: Vitas Laboratory LLC in Barling; Corrlabs LLC in Southern Pines, North Carolina; Nations Laboratory Services LLC in Tecumseh, Oklahoma; Beach Tox LLC in Torrance, California; and Imaginus Diagnostic Laboratory LLC in Spiro, Oklahoma.
Taylor pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and one count of money laundering. He faces up to 20 years in federal prison for each count. He is expected to be sentenced in about four months by U.S. District Court Judge Mark E. Ford in Fort Smith.
Taylor told Arkansas Business in October 2021 that the claims by the government were “completely erroneous and false.”