Even though he is running full steam ahead for governor, Greg Abbott is not forgetting his duties as Attorney General as he collected $19.5 million for the State of Texas through an agreement with Taro Pharmaceuticals, USA, Inc., according to a statement released by his office today Monday, Aug. 11. Abbott, a native of Wichita Falls, Texas and the top law enforcement officer for the state, disclosed that under the settlement agreement, Taro must pay the State of Texas a total of $8.75 million for the Lone Star State's general revenue fund.
The settlement agreement only continues a long streak of excellent results Abbott has achieved for the citizens of the State of Texas in courtrooms stretching from the Rio Grande River all the way to the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. This agreement resolves successfully the State's Medicaid fraud investigation against Taro for fraudulently reporting inflated drug prices to the Medicaid program.
Because the Medicaid program is funded jointly by both the state and the federal government, the feds will be entitled to share in the settlement proceeds garnered by the hard work of Abbott's staff. That staff has investigated several pharmaceutical manufacturers for reporting inflated drug prices to the Medicaid program. The Civil Medicaid Fraud team under Abbott's supervision, discovered that Taro had for 11 years violated Texas law when it misreported the prices of various drugs to the Medicaid program. Because of this, Medicaid reimbursed pharmacies more than it should have for some of the companies' products.
Since 2002, the Civil Medicaid Fraud Division's recoveries for the Lone Star State have surpassed the $500 million level. When one throws in the state and federal recoveries the number soars to $1.46 billion.
Abbott has already made his name in the courts of this land by defending religious rights, gun rights and individual rights of Texans for many years during his terms as Texas Attorney General. He went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court to insure that the Ten Commandments monument is still standing on the Capitol grounds in Austin. An atheist had walked across the grounds, seen the religious symbol and determined they should go. He might have been successful had there been a less dedicated attorney general office in office at the time.
Abbott has also appeared in the U.S. Supreme Court to defend the rights of Texans to bear arms. Even though it has been more than a century since Texans had to battle Santa Ana's invading armies by bearing arms, the significance of that right in the formation of this state has not been forgotten.
Abbott will stand for election in November as the Republican nominee. As its Attorney General, Texas has had no stronger advocate for its rights. The polls indicate that as Governor Rick Perry moves on to run for President of the United States, the chances are good Abbott will be the next resident of the Governor's Mansion in Austin.
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