NORFOLK, Va. - Former Norfolk Sheriff Robert McCabe was charged Thursday with defrauding the citizens of Norfolk through a bribery scheme, according to a statement by the United States Department of Justice.
McCabe, 61, and former CEO of Wellpath, a company previously known as Correct Care Solutions, Gerard Boyle, 64, are accused of participating in an illicit quid pro quo relationship while McCabe served as sheriff, according to court documents. Wellpath contracted with the Norfolk Sheriff's Office to provide medical care services to the inmates at the Norfolk City Jail.
Between January 2004 and December 2016, Boyle is accused of providing McCabe with gifts including cash, travel, gift cards and campaign contributions in exchange for contract extensions and renewals favoring Wellpath.
McCabe is also accused of a similar quid pro quo relationship with the CEO of a Louisiana-based company providing food services management to the jail.
He announced his retirement in 2016 after serving as sheriff for 26 years, saying that he "wanted to take time for himself while he could."
According to court documents, McCabe is charged with 11 counts, including conspiracy to commit honest services mail fraud, honest services mail fraud, conspiracy to obtain property under color of official right, obtaining property under color of official right and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
"The government has alleged there was a quid pro quo and that’s a fancy term meaning you’re getting something to give something else in your official capacity,"
said Michael Goodove, an attorney with the firm Swartz, Taliaferro, Swartz, & Goodove, "They’re alleging that he awarded contracts and received money, items, goods, and services in return for making that award."
Boyle is charged with six felony counts.
On Thursday, the Norfolk Sheriff's Office released a statement saying:
"The Norfolk Sheriff’s Office is a values-driven organization committed to public safety, public service, and public trust. The Sheriff’s Office offered the FBI full cooperation during its investigation. Out of respect for the on-going judicial process, we have no further comment at this time."
Wellpath also released a statement, saying:
“For over 15 years we have provided quality healthcare to our patients at the Norfolk City Jail. The charges against Mr. Boyle are serious, and we have accepted his resignation from all positions with our company. We remain committed to providing the same high-quality care that led to us being selected as the jail’s healthcare provider in a competitive bidding process, in 2018, under the new leadership at the Norfolk City Jail. Our success is a direct recognition of the high-quality and compassionate care our staff provides to patients every day.”
If convicted, McCabe faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for each count.
News 3 reached out to McCabe's attorney, James Broccoletti, who said McCabe has been a loyal public servant in the City of Norfolk for decades and that he looks forward to the day he is vindicated.
"People need to realize these are allegations only. That's what a trial is about. That's what cross examination is about. That's what a jury’s verdict is about," said James Broccoletti, McCabe's attorney. "He's committed to pleading not guilty. He's committed to having a trial and as I said, he looks forward to being vindicated."
He said he is making arrangements to turn himself in; however, a date has yet to be set, but it will likely be next week.