A Santa Monica physician was arrested Thursday, December 13th, on three felony charges of state income tax evasion, according to the State Franchise Tax Board.
Barnett J.W. Grier, Jr., 63, a self-employed physician who lives in Santa Monica, was arrested without incident at his Santa Monica home by Franchise Tax Board special investigators.
Investigators alleged that Grier failed to file state income tax returns for 2002 to 2004, failing to claim the more than $5.2 million he earned during those years. He was employed by a Plumas County medical clinic at the time of his arrest.
Each felony count carries a maximum term of three years in state prison.
This marks the sixth arrest by Franchise Tax Board investigators since they have been working with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office Fraud Interdiction Program.
In 2004, district attorney Steve Cooley launched the program to more effectively investigate and prosecute healthcare fraud cases, which cost health insurers and government-funded health plans over $100 billion nationally each year, according to the district attorney’s office.
The program targets attorneys, medical doctors, chiropractors, dentists and clinic owners who have allegedly engaged in healthcare fraud.
The program was designed and implemented by deputy district attorney Al MacKenzie, who has more than 30 years experience as a prosecutor.
Grier was booked into the Los Angeles Inmate Reception Center and his bail was set at $1 million, according to the Franchise Tax Board. The date for his arraignment has not been set.