PHOENIX — An Arizona woman accused of faking a cancer diagnosis in order to get state Medicaid funding to cover a late-term abortion genuinely believed she was sick, her defense attorney said Thursday.
Attorney Adam Schwartz told jurors in opening statements that Chalice Renee Zeitner was told she had cancer and she did not set out to defraud anyone.
“The requirement is that she did this knowingly and intentionally,” he said. “The fact is that Ms. Zeitner did genuinely believe she had cancer in 2009 and 2010.”
Zeitner, 30, is on trial in Phoenix on nearly a dozen charges including fraudulent schemes, identity theft, theft, attempted theft and forgery. She has pleaded not guilty to all of them.