Attorney General Mayes Announces Indictment Of 3 People In Fraud Cause Involving Phoenix Behavioral Center

Attorney General Kris Mayes announced on Wednesday that the State Grand Jury has indicted 30-year-old Shawnjerria Lucas, 50-year-old Defendant # 2, and 40-year-old Lavita Verser on 19 felony fraud-related counts each.

The indictment alleges that Lucas and Defendant # 2 owned and operated A Better You Wellness Center, LLC, in Phoenix and employed Verser as the center’s biller.

The investigation that led to the indictment was conducted by Special Agents of the Attorney General’s Office, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – Office of Inspector General, and investigators from the AHCCCS Office of Inspector General.

Government records revealed that A Better You Wellness Center, LLC had billed Arizona’s Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) and the American Indian Health Program (AHIP) for more than $115,000,000 in behavioral health services between December 2021 and February 2023. It is alleged that a portion of these bills for services were fraudulent in nature.

Lucas and Defendant # 2 now face 19 felony charges, including Conspiracy, Illegal Control of an Enterprise, Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, and multiple counts of Theft.

Verser’s 19 felony charges include Conspiracy, Illegally Conducting an Enterprise, Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, and multiple counts of Theft.

Assistant Attorneys General Matthew Williams and Humberto Preciado are prosecuting this case.

All defendants are presumed innocent until convicted in a court of law. A copy of the indictment is available here. Photos of Defendants Lucas and Verser are available here.