Ex-California hospital CEO will admit new charges related to $950M fraud scheme

Ayla Ellison (Twitter) - Print  | 

Michael Drobot, former owner and CEO of Pacific Hospital in Long Beach, Calif., is currently imprisoned for his role in a kickback scheme, and prosecutors say he has now agreed to plead guilty to new charges.

Mr. Drobot pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy and paying illegal kickbacks in 2014. He admitted paying millions of dollars in bribes to physicians in exchange for referring thousands of patients to his hospital for spinal surgeries. He was one of several defendants charged for their roles in the kickback scheme, which resulted in the submission of more than $950 million in fraudulent claims.

In January 2018, Mr. Drobot was sentenced to more than five years in prison and ordered to forfeit $10 million to the government, which included the profits from the sale of a 1965 Aston Martin, a 1958 Porsche and a 1971 Mercedes-Benz. Federal prosecutors allege Mr. Drobot violated the order by transferring the Aston Martin to an auction company. Profits from the sale of the vehicle were allegedly transferred to Mr. Drobot's personal bank account and used for personal expenses, according to MyNewsLA.com.

Prosecutors charged Mr. Drobot with wire fraud, engaging in monetary transactions in property derived from unlawful activity and criminal contempt of court. He is expected to plead guilty to the new charges, which carry a maximum sentence of 50 years, in coming weeks, according to the report.

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