Georgia Nurses Accused of Obtaining Fake Nursing Degrees Say They Earned the Diplomas

Georgia Nurses Accused of Obtaining Fake Nursing Degrees Say They Earned the Diplomas

Earlier this week, a reporter from WSB-TV broke a story alleging that almost two dozen nurses in Georgia bought fake nursing degrees and bogus transcripts. After the Georgia Board of Nursing demanded the nurses surrender their nursing licenses, an attorney for the nurses is claiming theirs are legitimate.

According to WSB-TV, Hannah Williams, an attorney representing five of the accused nurses stated that the nurses say they are innocent of what they’re being accused of. Investigative reporter Justin Gray was informed that 22 nurses who are practicing in Georgia had purportedly acquired their nursing licenses by using fake diplomas or transcripts.

On Jan.17, the Georgia Board of Nursing sent them letters requesting that they voluntarily surrender their nursing licenses within 30 days. None of them have complied with the requests yet.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said, “It’s concerning and alarming.”

Williams has gone on record to say that her clients will not surrender their nursing licenses, because they have not done anything wrong.

“My clients maintain that they are legitimate,” Williams said.

“Look, nobody wants a fraudulent nurse taking care of them or their loved ones. However, in this case what we have are allegations and an investigation. We have to allow that process to play out before we rush to judgment.”

Last week, The FBI and Department of Justice announced that there was a bust, named named Operation Nightingale, of a $100 million nationwide fraud ring.

The nurses in Georgia are supposedly part of thousands of people who paid $15,000 each for a phony diploma from three nursing schools located in South Florida. Williams, who is also a nurse, said that there were some people who legitimately obtained their degrees from those schools.

“Our job is to make sure that our people in Georgia, our patients know they have credentialed nurses that are practicing there,” Raffensperger said. He also mentioned that state investigators are currently working with the FBI to get the evidence that’s needed to revoke the nursing licenses of the nurses who won’t give back the licenses on their own.

Williams said the nurses want to regain their reputations and defend their licenses through the proper channels.

“There’s been no determination of wrongdoing by any type of judicial body. So to rush to judgment and start firing nurses just because they went to an accredited school that’s been implicated in criminal activity is just wrong,” Williams said.