The second former Columbia/HCA Healthcare Corp. executive convicted last summer in a highly publicized criminal Medicare fraud trial will report to a North Carolina federal prison on Jan. 12, pending appeal.
Late last month, a federal judge in Tampa, Fla., sentenced Jay Jarrell, 44, the former chief executive officer of Columbia's southwest Florida division, to 33 months in prison.
U.S. District Judge Susan Bucklew also ordered Jarrell to pay nearly $1.7 million in restitution and a $10,000 fine. She recommended Jarrell serve his time at the Seymour Johnson Federal Prison in Goldsboro, N.C.
Several times Jarrell declined to answer when Bucklew asked him to explain his actions.
After a two-month trial, a federal jury in Tampa convicted Jarrell and co-defendant Robert Whiteside, 49, the former director of Columbia's single markets division, of six counts each of defrauding Medicare, Medicaid and the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services of $3 million, conspiracy and filing false statements.
In early December, Bucklew sentenced Whiteside to two years in prison and ordered him to pay $645,000 in restitution to Medicare, Florida Medicaid and CHAMPUS. Whiteside is to report to the Federal Prison Camp in Montgomery, Ala., by Jan. 12, pending appeal.
Both executives, who have been released on their own recognizance, faced a maximum sentence of 30 years imprisonment and up to $1.5 million in fines.
In both cases, Bucklew postponed payment of restitution pending the outcome of civil whistleblower lawsuits against Columbia.
Jarrell and Whiteside's indictment and conviction resulted from a separate and ongoing criminal fraud investigation of the nation's largest hospital chain and its executives.
A federal grand jury indicted two other midlevel Columbia executives along with Whiteside and Jarrell, but the jury acquitted one, and the other entered into a plea agreement after the jury failed to reach a decision on his guilt or innocence.