ABERDEEN — A third person has pleaded not guilty to charges related to an alleged kickback scheme at Tri-Lakes Medical Center in Panola County.
The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports Robert S. Corkern entered the plea Tuesday in federal court in Aberdeen. He was released on $40,000 bond.
Corkern is charged with conspiracy to defraud the U.S., three counts of loan and credit application fraud, and one count of bribery involving federal programs.
Corkern will face trial Dec. 12 with co-defendants Raymond L. Shoemaker, a Tupelo healthcare executive, and Earnest Levi “Lee” Garner Jr., a Batesville businessman. They each pleaded not guilty several months ago and are free on bond.
Federal prosecutors have alleged David Chandler, the former county administrator, acted as a middleman for the kickbacks. Chandler has not been indicted.
The government alleges Garner paid Chandler $268,000 for nursing service hours billed to the hospital by Garner’s business. In return, prosecutors say Chandler was to use his influence to increase Tri-Lakes’ use of Garner’s business.
Prosecutors said Chandler also paid Shoemaker $12,000, which was toward a demand for an alleged $25,000 bribe.
BEFORE YOU GO…
… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.
If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.Click for more info