A jury acquitted two former HealthSouth Corp. executives on charges that they participated in a bribery scheme to help win the company a $50 million contract to manage a rehabilitation hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Robert Thomson, former president and chief operating officer at HealthSouth's inpatient division, and James Reilly, a former group vice president of legal services, were acquitted on four charges each in U.S. District Court, Birmingham, Ala. Prosecutors alleged that the men agreed to pay the director general of a Saudi Arabian foundation annual kickbacks of $500,000 during the five-year contract. The defense said the payments were consulting fees. Last year, Vincent Nico, a former HealthSouth vice president, pleaded guilty to wire fraud in connection with the case and Thomas Carman, a former executive vice president, pleaded guilty to making false statements to federal authorities. Both men await sentencing. -- by Joseph Mantone
Former HealthSouth execs cleared in Saudi hospital case
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