Florida Governor Rick Scott, before he became the head of one of the more conservative states in the Union, was the chief executive officer and one of the founders of Colombia/HCA, a hospital company. After whistleblower, John Schilling brought to light discrepancies in accounting practices at the company in its Medicare billings, Scott was ousted from his top spot, leading him free to run for the only position lower than a fraudulent CEO…Governor.
In a recent appearance in support of Scott’s gubernatorial election opponent Democrat Charlie Crist, John Schilling spoke out against the Governor stating that, “”Fraud was brewing in the DNA of Rick Scott’s company from the very beginning, and he was the father of it.”
Schilling, himself a Republican, said he shared in “whistleblower” rewards of about $100 million for exposing the padded billing, kickbacks to doctors and medical providers, and improper expense accounting that led to the penalties against Columbia/HCA.
Schilling indicated that he discovered, as an accountant for the company, that they were keeping two sets of books…and one was marked “DO NOT SHOW TO MEDICARE AUDITORS.”
Schilling said he left the company in 1995 and went to the FBI, then returned as an informant, sometimes secretly recording meetings and confidentially reporting activities to federal investigators.
During his 2010 campaign for governor, Scott repeatedly said he did not know about actions of underlings in the multinational corporation. Crist, a former Republican governor who preceded Scott in office, is now running as a Democrat and has made Scott’s corporate record a centerpiece of his campaign.
Though Scott was never prosecuted for participation in the fraudulent scheme, Crist and Schilling maintain that he should have been. It’s hard to imagine a company engaging in billions of dollars of fraudulent billing without the knowledge of its top executive, but if there’s one thing CEOs are good at, it’s avoiding liability for their company’s wrongdoings.
While it remains to be seen whether or not this discussion will have any effect in the up-coming election for Florida’s top spot, Scott’s proximity to such a large fraudulent scheme needs to remain in the forefront of voter’s minds when they hit the polls. At the very least, his unwitting participation sheds doubt on his ability to effectively handle a large company, never mind an entire state.
Have you ever found yourself asking: What do I do if my employer is doing something illegal? or Should I report my employer for fraud?
If so, contact Stephen Danz & Associates at (877) 789-9707 or use the Contact Form on our website to schedule a FREE CONSULTATION today. Stephen is a recognized expert in whistleblower cases and the senior partner of the largest ’employee-only’ law firm in California.