HomeNewsBiden’s DOJ Vows to Re-Try Man After Trump Commuted His Sentence

    Biden’s DOJ Vows to Re-Try Man After Trump Commuted His Sentence

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    A Republican lawmaker is criticizing the Biden Justice Department for reportedly deciding to retry a man whose sentence was commuted by former President Donald Trump.

    According to The Epoch Times, Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Arizona) stated during a House hearing earlier this week that it is a “travesty of justice” for the department to retry former healthcare executive Philip Esformes.

    In 2019, Esformes was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his involvement in a healthcare fraud conspiracy.

    In December 2020, then-President Donald Trump commuted Esformes’ sentence, culminating in his release from prison after having served his time since his 2016 arrest. However, Trump did not grant Esformes a pardon for the unresolved counts left undetermined by the jury. In addition, Esformes was required to pay $5 million in restitution and adhere to a three-year period of supervised release, according to the news source.

    “But after his release and despite the commutation, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) decided it would retry Esformes on the hung counts, an unusual move that was met with disapproval by legal experts,” The Epoch Times noted.

    The Department of Justice characterized the Esformes prosecution as its “largest health care fraud scheme ever charged”

    Federal prosecutors assert that between January 1998 and July 2016, Esformes lead a “extensive health care fraud conspiracy” related to his chain of assisted living skilled nursing facilities. According to the DOJ, patients who were transferred to his facilities “frequently did not receive appropriate medical services or received medically unnecessary services billed to Medicare and Medicaid.”

    According to the testimony of witnesses, a number of facilities were in deplorable condition. According to a summary of the case available on the Law & Crime website, Esformes attempted to conceal these conditions by bribing Florida state officials.

    The department determined that Esformes “personally benefited from the fraud” to the tune of approximately $37 million. He then used “criminal proceeds to make a series of extravagant purchases, including luxury automobiles and a $360,000 watch,” and bribed a University of Pennsylvania basketball coach to get his son admitted to the Ivy League institution.

    In April 2019, a jury found Esformes guilty of multiple offenses, including fraud, bribery conspiracy, money laundering, and obstruction of justice. On several other counts, the jury was unable to reach a verdict. The outlet reported that these unresolved counts included charges of conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud, federal program extortion, and other offenses related to healthcare fraud.

    According to the DOJ’s summary, U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola, an Obama appointee, sentenced Esformes later that year.

    Biggs wrote that while the Department of Justice claimed Esformes’ actions cost the government $1.4 billion, the jury determined that the actual loss was less than $200,000.

    More on this story via Conservative Brief:

    In February, Biggs sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, expressing his concerns and seeking an update on the case where allegations of prosecutorial misconduct have been raised. CONTINUE READING…

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