Ex-hospital exec guilty of bribing state senator

The former CEO of Parkway Hospital in Queens, N.Y., pleaded guilty to bribing former State Sen. Carl Kruger (D-Brooklyn), the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) announced this week.

According to the indictment, the complaint and statements made during Tuesday's plea proceeding, Dr. Robert Aquino in 2008 made Parkway Hospital pay $60,000 to Adex Management Inc., a company in which Kruger had interests. Aquino said he made the payments to Adex in exchange for Kruger's help to keep Parkway Hospital open.

Reinforcing his spot on the FierceHealthcare 2011 list of 10 notorious healthcare execs, Aquino confessed to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery and faces a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison, plus a fine of $250,000.

"Robert Aquino was all too willing to make sure a bribe was paid to preserve his job as CEO of a hospital," Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney for Manhattan, said in a statement. "Like others in this case, he chose to fight his battle with money under the table rather than to play by the rules."

Back in September 2011, MediSys Health Network's CEO David P. Rosen was found guilty on multiple counts of bribery of hundreds of thousands of dollars in return for favors from Kruger and two other New York legislators.

For more information:
- read the FBI press release