Two Former Charity Executives Sentenced for Multimillion-Dollar Corruption Scheme

Two Former Missouri Health Care Charity Executives Sentenced for Roles in Multimillion-Dollar Bribery and Embezzlement Scheme

In a case emblematic of public corruption, two former executives of a charity based in Springfield, Missouri, have been sentenced for their involvement in a multimillion-dollar bribery and embezzlement scheme.

Bontiea Bernedette Goss, 65, was sentenced to three years in prison, while her husband, Tommy “Tom” Ray Goss, 68, received a six-year sentence.

They were also ordered to jointly pay $4.35 million in forfeiture and restitution.

The couple, who served as chief operating officer and chief financial officer of Preferred Family Healthcare Inc., respectively, participated in a scheme that involved embezzlement and bribes to elected officials in Arkansas.

In exchange for these illicit payments, Arkansas officials provided favorable legislative and official actions for the charity, including directing funds from the state’s General Improvement Fund.

Court documents reveal that the Gosses were integral to the scheme, orchestrating bribes and kickbacks to influence legislative decisions and secure financial gains for the charity.

Bontiea and Tom Goss pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges related to bribery and kickbacks in September 2022. Additionally, Tom Goss pleaded guilty to embezzling funds from the charity and aiding in the presentation of a false tax return.

Preferred Family Healthcare Inc. also faced consequences for its role in the corruption scheme. In 2022, the charity agreed to pay over $8 million in forfeiture and restitution under a non-prosecution agreement, acknowledging the criminal conduct of its former executives and employees.

This case, part of a broader federal investigation, has seen multiple individuals implicated in the corruption scheme plead guilty, including former charity executives and elected officials in Arkansas.

The investigation, conducted by agencies such as the IRS Criminal Investigation, FBI, and various Offices of the Inspector General, underscores the commitment to combatting public corruption and holding perpetrators accountable.

The prosecution of these cases reflects the collaborative efforts of federal law enforcement agencies and underscores the importance of upholding integrity and accountability in public service.

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri and U.S. Attorneys Teresa A. Moore, Jonathan D. Ross, and David Clay Fowlkes made the announcement, stressing the dedication of the Justice Department in combating corruption at all levels.