From the U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Missouri:
St. Louis, MO – Tayon Hutchins Fowler, 41, of Florissant, was indicted on Thursday with two counts of wire fraud and two counts of making false statements about being disabled to the Social Security Administration (“SSA”). Fowler surrendered this morning to U.S. Marshals.
The indictment alleges that Fowler submitted an application for disability payments to SSA in 2012, claiming to be depressed and unable to work. After Fowler began receiving periodic disability payments from SSA, she started a home health care business and received more than $100,000 per year from this business during 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017. In July 2017, Fowler sold the home health care business. In March 2018 and again in September 2018, Fowler made two false statements to SSA about not working and not receiving any income since December 2016.
Further, in December 2017, Fowler bought a luxury automobile from a local dealership. To obtain financing, Fowler made false representations to the dealership, falsely claiming that she still owned the home health care business and further was still receiving income from that business. These false representations are charged in Counts Three and Four of the Indictment as wire fraud.
If Fowler is convicted, the false statement charges have a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, while the wire fraud charges have a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Restitution to the victims is also mandatory. In determining the actual sentences, a judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.
As is always the case, charges set forth in an indictment are merely accusations and do not constitute proof of guilt. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Office of Inspector General for the Social Security Administration is investigating this case, with assistance from the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Missouri Attorney General’s Office.