2 men plead guilty to defrauding the Quillen VA Medical Center
Two surgical sales representatives have pleaded guilty to bribery and wire fraud charges after after defrauding the Quillen VA Medical Center. The U.S. Department of Justice says that Eric Smith, 54 of Bristol, and Landon Chester, 36 of Johnson City, entered guilty pleas Thursday. Smith and Chester each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery and honest services wire fraud. Both face up to five years in federal prison, along with $250,000 fines and supervised release of three years. Smith and Chester also agreed to pay restitution and forfeited seized bank accounts with more than $156,000. Both admitted to conspiring and bribing two VA employees to help them defraud the medical center. The bribes reportedly exceeded more than $80,000. Smith and Chester are scheduled to be sentenced May 30.