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Florida Man Sentenced To 20 Years In Prison For Billion Dollar Medicare Fraud

MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — A wealthy Miami Beach businessman, who operated a network of nursing homes and assisted living facilities in South Florida, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for running a billion-dollar Medicare fraud scheme.

A Miami federal judge imposed the sentence Thursday on Philip Esformes in one of the biggest such cases in U.S. history.

Prosecutors had sought a 30-year prison term, while Esformes' lawyers wanted leniency.

Jurors, who convicted Esformes on 20 counts, found Esformes businesses used kickbacks and bribes to gain business.

A former Ivy League basketball coach testified Esformes bribed him to get his son into school. Esformes was also convicted of charges of obstruction of justice, for plotting to help one of his co-conspirators flee to another country.

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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