Home Health 21 Nurses Charged …As Witherspoon, Others ‘Fake Diplomas’ Probe Heats Up

21 Nurses Charged …As Witherspoon, Others ‘Fake Diplomas’ Probe Heats Up

by newsmanager

AUSTIN, TEXAS: The Texas Board of Nursing (BON) has filed Formal Charges against 21 nurses for fraudulently obtaining educational credentials.

According to the Texas Board of Nursing, “The Board is authorized to file Formal Charges against a nurse if probable cause exists that the nurse has committed an act listed in Tex. Occ. Code §301.452(b) or that violates other law.

See Tex. Occ. Code §301.458. Further, Formal Charges are publicly available. See Tex. Occ. Code §301.466(b). Please note that Formal Charges are not a final disciplinary action, and a nurse is permitted to work, as a nurse, while Formal Charges are pending…”

According to the Texas Occupations Code, Section 301.466 (a) A complaint and investigation concerning a nurse under this subchapter, all information and material compiled by the board in connection with the complaint and investigation, and the information described by Subsection (d) are: (1)confidential and not subject to disclosure under Chapter 552 (Public Information), Government Code; and (2)not subject to disclosure, discovery, subpoena, or other means of legal compulsion for release to anyone other than the board or a board employee or agent involved in license holder discipline.

(b) Notwithstanding Subsection (a), information regarding a complaint and an investigation may be disclosed to: (1) a person involved with the board in a disciplinary action against the nurse; (2)a nursing licensing or disciplinary board in another jurisdiction; (3) a peer assistance program approved by the board under Chapter 467 (Peer Assistance Programs), Health and Safety Code; (4) a law enforcement agency; or (5) a person engaged in bona fide research, if all information identifying a specific individual has been deleted. (c) The filing of formal charges against a nurse by the board, the nature of those charges, disciplinary proceedings of the board, and final disciplinary actions, including warnings and reprimands, by the board are not confidential and are subject to disclosure in accordance with Chapter 552 (Public Information), Government Code. (d) Notwithstanding Subsection (c), if the board orders a nurse to participate in a peer assistance program approved by the board under Section 467.003 (Programs), Health and Safety Code, the complaint, filing of formal charges, nature of those charges, final board order, and disciplinary proceedings are subject to disclosure:(1) only to the same extent as information regarding a complaint is subject to disclosure under Subsection (b); or (2) in a subsequent matter relating to the board order or a subsequent violation of this chapter or a board rule.”

This paper could not confirm as to whether the 21 Nigerian-related sounding names are all Nigerian nurses based in Texas, and will withhold their respective names except their license numbers which included; LVN #1054553 LVN #1043387RN #941850RN #1034998LVN #351002LVN #342620LVN#353512 LVN#1009094 LVN #1016030 RN #882398 LVN #351402 LVN #1055270 LVN #1049072 LVN #1031788LVN# 1031788#351969LVN# 1016636RN #1020740LVN#1046786RN #1021659LVN#1046089LVN#1048817LVN#346176.

According to the Texas Board of Nursing, the list will be updated continuously as the Board receives additional information about the fraudulent diploma/transcript scheme.

Recently, the US government indicted a Liberian Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) and businessman Stanton Witherspoon by a Federal Grand Jury in Southern Florida and accused along with his co-conspirators of orchestrating the scheme.

U.S. law enforcement conducted a multiyear of criminal investigation which allegedly uncovered the fraudulent sale of nursing diplomas and transcripts.

The accused have all pleaded “not guilty” to charges of Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud and Wire Fraud and scheduled to go to trial in April.

U.S. Prosecutors are seeking a 20-year jail term if the accused are convicted along with forfeiture of properties which the U.S. Government has identified in New Jersey, Georgia and Florida.

About 7,600 fake nursing documents were allegedly sold by the fraudsters. State authorities in Arizona Washington State, Nebraska, Delaware and others have opened investigations into those allegedly involved in their states.

Witherspoon, a native of Liberia, owns several media companies in the West African country including Spoon-TV on social media on which he and his panelists host a daily political talk show.

But on last Friday, public pressure and the gravity of the legal case against Witherspoon accelerated the exit of four of the panelists who blamed their exit on “internal disagreement on the way forward” of the talk show known as “Spoon Talk;” Source AFRICAN STAR.

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