Oklahoma Pharmacy Pays $140,000 to Settle Civil Penalty Claims Stemming from Allegations of Recordkeeping Violations
OKLAHOMA CITY – Last week, Candy Hanza, 50, of Medicine Park, Oklahoma, pleaded guilty to paying a bribe to a public official, announced United States Attorney Robert. J. Troester.
On May 3, 2023, a federal grand jury returned a twelve-count indictment against Hanza and co-defendant Alfred Palma. According to the Indictment, Hanza was the general manager of a local hotel in Lawton. Palma, a United States Army employee and public official, was the manager of the Institutional Training Directed Lodging and Meals (“ITDLM”) program at Fort Sill, through which he booked hotel rooms for soldiers who attended on-post trainings. The Indictment alleges that Hanza paid Palma to direct soldiers to the hotel, while she personally profited through her own scheme to defraud the hotel owners and launder the resulting proceeds.
At a hearing before United States District Judge Patrick R. Wyrick on July 28, 2023, Hanza admitted that she gave cash and checks totaling $103,200.00 to Palma with the intent to induce him to favor the hotel at which she was a general manager when Palma booked soldiers for off-post trainings.
At sentencing, Hanza faces up to 15 years in federal prison, and a fine of $250,000 or three times the monetary value of the bribes, and up to three years of supervised release.
On June 26, 2023, Palma pleaded guilty to Count Two of the Indictment, and admitted that he accepted Hanza’s bribe. Palma is also awaiting sentencing.
This case is the result of an investigation by the United States Army Criminal Investigation Division, the Department of Defense Contract Audit Agency, and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julia E. Barry is prosecuting the case.