Maine woman charged with defrauding Iowa Medicaid

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A Maine woman has pleaded not guilty to charges that she filed $26,000 in false claims with the Iowa Medicaid program.

Cindy Lou Worthen made an initial appearance Thursday at the federal courthouse in Bangor, where she was arraigned through video teleconference by court officials in Des Moines.

Worthen had been ordered to appear in person, but didn’t show for an earlier hearing. A magistrate said Worthen had difficulty making travel arrangements and worked out the long-distance plan rather than issue an arrest warrant as prosecutors requested.

The 26-count indictment alleges that Worthen filed 25 claims with Iowa Medicaid for home health care services that were actually performed by another provider who was barred from the program because of her criminal history. She’s been released pending a July 29 trial.

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