Healthcare Conglomerate Associates executives charged with financial, public integrity crimes

Register Staff
Staff Writer

Criminal charges stemming from a three-year investigation by the Tulare County District Attorney’s Office Bureau of Investigations have been filed against former Healthcare Conglomerate Associates (HCCA) executives CEO Dr. Yorai“Benny” Benzeevi of Visalia, CFO Alan Germany of Arizona, and Tulare Regional Medical Center and HCCA counsel Bruce Greene of Los Angeles.

The criminal complaint contains 40felony and six misdemeanor charges of varying scope between defendants.Some of the alleged crimes are believed to have occurred in Inyo County. Those matters will be prosecuted in Tulare County with the consent of Inyo County District Attorney Tom Hardy. It is alleged that the defendants used control of public hospital entities to enrich themselves through the improper use of taxpayer and private loans, and other public integrity crimes. Crimes alleged include misappropriation of government funds, conflicts of interest, money laundering, embezzlement, theft and failure to disclose funds intended to influence a political campaign.
“Since 2017, criminal investigators have traveled over 70,000 miles to eight California counties and six U.S. states including Arizona, Idaho, Maine, Georgia, Colorado, Michigan and Washington D.C. Fifty-eight total search warrants were served. Investigators, support staff and prosecutors dedicated over 13,500 hours to the investigation. The TCDA Digital Forensics Unit collected approximately 30 terabytes of digital evidence. To put that in context, it would take nearly 45,000 standard CD-ROM discs to hold the information,” said Tulare County District Attorney Tim Ward.“We are grateful for the support and patience of the community, as well as the Tulare County Board of Supervisors during this unprecedented investigation. The board’s commitment ensured that we were able to utilize our resources fully. We estimate the entirety of the investigation amounts to slightly over $1.5 million in staff hours and overtime, travel,and associated costs,” Ward continued.
“On behalf of the citizens of Inyo County, I appreciate the huge commitment of resources on the part of Tulare County and its district attorney,” said Inyo County District Attorney Tom Hardy. “Mr. Ward and his team notified me of their work very early in the investigation, especially as it related to the Southern Inyo Healthcare District,and they have been diligent in keeping me informed as to the overall case and the alleged Inyo connections. Given the wide-ranging scope of the allegations and alleged interconnections between activities in Inyo and Tulare County, it is appropriate to combine all the charges in the Tulare County case. I am committed to providing Tulare County with whatever assistance we can.”

While several of the charged crimes carry a potential prison sentence, due to California emergency COVID-19 orders, the charges in this case are not exempt from the court imposed $0 bail schedule. The Office of the District Attorney is in the process of contacting attorneys for the defendants to expedite the remand of their respective clients.

If convicted, each defendant potentially faces a significant state prison commitment. The specific amount of prison time as to each defendant varies due to the nature of the charges and California sentencing rules; however, on the most serious charge (money laundering) Benzeevi is potentially facing 13 years while Greene and Germany are each facing up to 9 years.Greene and Germany have potential maximum sentences of well over a decade should they be found guilty of all of the charges and allegations, and Benzeevi is facing in excess of four decades.

According to the criminal complaint, "defendant flight records indicate that (Benzeevi) departed the U.S.A.on 3/01/19 and has not returned to the country since."

Southern Inyo has filed a civil suit regarding HCCA and Benzeevi on a variety of mismanagement allegations.