The state Bureau of Medicaid Fraud has been asked by the Utah attorney general's office to investigate reports of Medicaid fraud at the Timpanogos Community Mental Health Center in Utah County.

"There's a lot of Medicaid money involved there," said Bureau Chief Susan Jones. "It (the investigation) is a can of worms."Medicaid fraud investigators are now reviewing the center's Medicaid records.

State Auditor Tom L. Allen has said his office is also conducting an audit aiming to recover money lost through abuses and to look at activities by all 160 employees at the center, instead of just the eight targeted in an earlier audit by the legislative auditor general.

That earlier audit, released last week, revealed that center administrators misused $3.5 million over four years most of which went to line their pockets. It said administrators gave themselves contracts for thousands of extra dollars a year and allowed themselves unlimited credit card privileges.