Judge refuses to release hospital management company CEO's money amid investigation


A judge in California said the former administrator of Tulare (Calif.) Regional Medical Center will have to wait until 2019 to know what will happen to cash and property seized during an investigation into his management of the hospital, according to the Visalia Times Delta.

Here are five things to know:

1. Tulare-based HealthCare Conglomerate Associates previously managed Tulare Regional Medical Center. Benny Benzeevi, MD, is chairman and CEO of HCCA.

2. Earlier this year, the FBI raided Dr. Benzeevi's home. To obtain the search warrant, investigators alleged he engaged in embezzlement and misappropriation of funds and property, fraudulently altering accounts, and theft of money or property under false pretenses, among other felony crimes. However, no charges were filed against Dr. Benzeevi.

3. Dr. Benzeevi's lawyers requested property and a bank account seized during the investigation be released. Items seized include iPads and computers. Prosecutors do not want to return the property because they argue the devices provide the best evidence in the investigation.

4. At a Nov. 9 hearing, the judge said an evidentiary hearing in early 2019 will determine if Mr. Benzeevi's property and money are returned to him, according to the report.

5. Tulare Regional Medical Center entered bankruptcy in September 2017 and shut down the next month. After ousting HCCA, the local health district entered a management agreement with Roseville, Calif.-based Adventist Health. The hospital reopened Oct. 15.

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