Utah Official Pleads to Health Insurance Fraud

November 11, 2009

The former commissioner of the Utah Department of Public Safety on Monday entered a conditional guilty plea to two third-degree felony charges of falsely obtaining a prescription and to a misdemeanor count of filing a fraudulent insurance claim.

Scott Duncan resigned from the post in January, citing unspecified health issues. On Monday the 57-year-old entered a plea in abeyance, meaning that if he meets certain conditions within 36 months, the charges will be dismissed.

Duncan came to authorities and said he had a drug problem, Assistant Utah Attorney General Shelley Coudreaut told the Deseret News in Salt Lake City. She said he said he went to multiple doctors in Utah County to get prescriptions for hydrocodone.

The conditions Duncan must meet include paying restitution, giving regular updates on his progress and completing a drug treatment program he is already in, Assistant Utah Attorney General Daryl Bell told The Associated Press on Monday.

Duncan told the Deseret News Monday that the incidents happened after he resigned as commissioner. He wouldn’t comment further.

Days before he resigned in January, Duncan was stopped twice by officers who said his driving was erratic and that he seemed lethargic and unresponsive to questions. He was taken to a Cedar City hospital to be examined, released after a few hours and driven to Salt Lake City.

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