TCH Live’s Billy Joe Taylor Charged With $88m Healthcare Fraud
Billy Joe Taylor, the popular host of the new cash game poker livestream TCH Live, has been formally charged with large-scale Medicare fraud. Taylor allegedly defrauded the US national health insurance program out of $88 million, including $42 million in fake COVID-19 tests.
Taylor has become a popular figure in the world of poker through his TCH Live stream. He is described as a maniac at the tables for his extremely loose and aggressive play style. He plays as if he is on a spending spree, and just gets on with it, win or lose.
For those who have been wondering where he gets his money from to be able to sustain such game style, the Department of Justice (DOJ) believes the poker player is involved in a massive COVID-19 insurance fraud.
In May, police raided Taylor’s homes and businesses in Sebastian County during which a number of luxury cars and high-end electronics were seized. He was not present during the raids and therefore was not arrested on-site, but he later surrendered to authorities. He was released on a $10,000 bail bond shortly after turning himself in.
Taylor owns two medical testing labs in the US, Beach Tox LLC in California, and Vitas Laboratories LLC based in Arkansas. Both were allegedly involved in a multi-million fraud scheme, stealing millions of dollars in COVID-19 relief testing incentives.
According to the DOJ, Taylor carried out the act by obtaining the names and social security numbers of eligible beneficiaries and then come up with fake billings without actually performing the tests. There were instances when the names of deceased people were used, alongside names of several doctors who never ordered the tests.
Taylor also allegedly hired inexperienced accounts and trained them for the criminal scheme. The DOJ also claims that one of the labs, Beach Tox LLC, operated without the actual laboratory equipment needed to conduct tests, and yet issued the billings. Investigators also found that Taylor has been perpetrating his fraud scheme since November 2017.
Taylor Faces 5-Year Imprisonment, Millions in Penalties
Taylor was among 14 defendants from seven states indicted by the DOJ for healthcare fraud amounting to $143 million.
Among them, Taylor’s $88 million scheme was allegedly the largest. Taylor has remained tightlipped on the allegations against him. If found guilty, the Arkansas poker player could face a 5-year jail term and millions in criminal and civil penalties.