A Health Assurance crony pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Michael Goddard was caught lying about payments regular payments he received from Health Assurance and other entities. Mr. Goddard is a health care consultant for corrections facilities. Health Assurance, LLC is owned by physicians Carl and Michael Reddix and is on Ridgewood Road in Jackson. It was formed in 2001. The registered agent is attorney Charlene Priester although Judge Melvin Priester served in that capacity in previous years. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Alabama issued this press release:
U.S. Attorney Charges Inmate Health Consultant with Lying to FBIBIRMINGHAM – The U.S. Attorney’s Office on Tuesday charged a Vestavia Hills man with making false statements to the FBI in relation to payments from a contractor providing inmate health care at the Jefferson County Jail, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Robert O. Posey and FBI Special Agent in Charge Roger C. Stanton.Prosecutors filed a one-count information in U.S. District Court charging MICHAEL P. GODDARD, 68, a consultant on inmate health at the county jail, with falsely telling FBI agents that payments he received from a Jefferson County contractor were unrelated to a specific contract.A plea agreement with Goddard filed in conjunction with the charging document, states that Birmingham FBI agents questioned Goddard in August 2016 while they were investigating recurring monthly payments to him from Davis & Associates, a Birmingham consulting firm, and “another entity that were funded by Health Assurance, LLC, a company that from 2007 through 2011 had contracts with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office to provide health care to Jefferson County jail inmates.”According to the plea agreement, the sheriff’s office contracted with Health Assurance in about February 2007 to provide inmate health care, and the contract could be renewed yearly. Soon after Health Assurance began receiving payments from Jefferson County, Goddard began receiving monthly payments from Davis & Associates that were funded by Health Assurance, the plea agreement states.In July 2011, the payments to Goddard funded by Health Assurance began coming from a different entity, according to the plea agreement. The documents do not name the second entity. The payments to Goddard continued to about October 2011, when Health Assurance’s contract with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office ended, the plea agreement states.FBI agents interviewed Goddard on Aug. 31 and served him with a grand jury subpoena for records. The agents asked Goddard about the monthly payments he received that were funded by Health Assurance. Goddard told the agents that the monthly payments he received were unrelated to Health Assurance’s contracts with Jefferson County.Goddard knew that statement was false “in that he knew the payments he received were directly related to the contracts, and he knew that this false statement was material to the FBI’s investigation,” the plea agreement states.The maximum penalty for making a false statement to the FBI is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.The FBI is investigating the case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney George Martin is prosecuting.
The petition to enter a guilty plea states:
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is part of the executive branch of the United States Government located within the United States Department of Justice. Agents of the FBI assigned to the Birmingham Field Office were investigating among other issues, recurring monthly payments the defendant received from Davis & Associates and another entity that were funded by Health Assurance, LLC, a company that from 2007 through 2011 had contracts with the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office to provide health care to Jefferson County jail inmates.
In or about February 2007, the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office and Health Assurance entered into a contract whereby Health Assurance would provide health care to Jefferson County jail inmates. The contract could be renewed each year. Soon after Health Assurance began receiving payments from Jefferson County, the defendant began receiving monthly payments from Davis & Associates 1hat were funded by Health Assurance. In or about July 2011, the Health Assurance funded payments were made to the defendant by another entity. The payments to the defendant continued until in or about October 2011, when Health Assurance's contract with the Jefferson County Sheriffs Office ended.
On or about August 31, 2016, agents of the FB in furtherance of the investigation, conducted an interview of the defendant at his residence in Jefferson County, Alabama, and served the defendant with a Grand Jury subpoena for records. The defendant, knowing the identity of the agents and the nature of the interview, voluntarily agreed to answer questions regarding his receipt of payments funded by Health Assurance During the interview, the defendant stated that the monthly payments he received were unrelated to Health Assurance's contracts with Jefferson County. The defendant knew that this statement was false in that he knew the payments he received were directly related to the contract, and he knew that this false statement was material to the FBI's investigation.
The U.S. Attorney in Jackson announced last July:
Dr. Carl Reddix, 57, of Jackson, was charged today with paying bribes and kickbacks to former Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) Commissioner Christopher B. Epps in exchange for receiving contracts involving the MDOC and its operations, announced Acting United States Attorney Harold Brittain and FBI Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Donald Alway.JJ broke the story of Reddix's involvement in the Chris Epps scandal two years ago:
Dr. Reddix was charged in a seven count indictment returned by a federal grand jury with conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud and with six counts of bribery. According to the indictment returned against Reddix, starting in 2012 and continuing until October, 2014, Dr. Reddix gave Epps bribes and kickbacks in exchange for the awarding and retention of MDOC contracts for Dr. Reddix’s company, Health Assurance, LLC to provide inmate health care services at four facilities: Walnut Grove Correctional Facility; East Mississippi Correctional Facility; Marshall County Correctional Facility; and, Wilkinson County Correctional Facility. The contracts were valued at over $29,000,000. The indictment also alleges that Dr. Reddix made cash payments to Epps ranging from $8,000 to 9,500 per month from May through October of 2014.
A company that was a prime beneficiary of MDOC's no-bid contract policy under Chris Epps also landed a lucrative contract with Harrison County for providing medical services to its inmates. MDOC paid Health Assurance, LLC more than $49 million for medical services to MDOC prisons from 2003 to 2014 while Harrison paid more than $14 million. Incredibly, the dates of the payments coincide with dates cited by prosecutors for when now-deceased Harrison County Supervisor William Martin accepted bribes in his indictment. Rest of one of the best posts on JJ.Oh what a tangled web we weave.