HealthSouth Founder Richard Scrushy's Sentence Is Upheld

HealthSouth Corp. (HLS) founder Richard Scrushy’s 70-month prison sentence for making a campaign contribution to Alabama’s former governor in exchange for a seat on a state hospital board was upheld by a federal appeals court.

Scrushy, 60 was assigned to a federal prison in Beaumont, Texas, after a jury convicted him in 2006 over the $500,000 contribution to former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman. Scrushy was acquitted in 2005 of charges of directing an accounting fraud at his Birmingham-based health-care company.

An appeals court in May 2011 overturned two of Scrushy’s convictions and upheld two others after the U.S. Supreme Court narrowed the scope of a law making it a crime to deprive citizens and shareholders of the honest services of public and corporate officers. In January 2012, his sentence was reduced to 70 months. His original prison term was six years and 10 months.

After his resentencing, Scrushy continued to appeal his conviction and push for a new trial on grounds including misconduct by prosecutors. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta today rejected each those claims, confirming a district court’s ruling.

Scrushy’s attorney, Arthur Leach, didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment on the decision.

Scrushy was released from prison on April 12, 2012, and served until July 25 of that year first at a halfway house and then under home confinement, said Chris Burke, a spokesman for the federal Bureau of Prisons. Scrushy’s sentence was also cut 274 days for good behavior, Burke said.

The case is U.S. v. Scrushy,  12-10694, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit (Atlanta).

To contact the reporter on this story: David Beasley in Atlanta at dbeasley3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Dunn at adunn8@bloomberg.net

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