Bryan Cohen Dec. 5, 2012, 8:18pm

WORCESTER, Mass. (Legal Newsline) - Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley announced a $700,000 order on Thursday against a Newton man who allegedly paid kickbacks to regional transit authority employees to divert funds to five of his companies.

Alexander Shrayber pleaded guilty in June to two counts of Medicaid kickbacks and four counts of corrupt gifts, offers or promises to influence officials. Worcester Superior Court Judge James R. Lemire sentenced Shrayber to 2.5 years in the House of Correction, suspended for five years, with five years of probation.

Lemire also ordered Shrayber to pay $200,000 in fines and $500,000 in restitution to the state's Medicaid program.

"This defendant, through an elaborate kickback scheme, stole directly from taxpayers and compromised the integrity of the public bidding process," Coakley said. "Our office will continue to aggressively root out corruption and fraud in the Medicaid system which provides critical services to our most vulnerable population."

Shrayber allegedly made cash payments to the Montachusett Regional Transit Authority between January 2007 and April 2010 as part of an arrangement to bypass the authority's low-bid system to divert transportation assignments for MassHealth recipients from other companies to one of Shrayber's transportation businesses.

MART provides transportation to recipients of MassHealth, a state Medicaid program that gives health insurance to the economically disadvantaged. Shrayber owned five separate transportation business that contracted work with MART, a public agency brokering transportation services to vendors throughout the state.

The low-bid system involves the Regional Transit Authorities acting as brokers to accept transportation requests from MassHealth members and matching the requests with transportation providers based on vendor capacity, availability and lowest price. The RTA matches requests for transportation to the provider with the lowest bid.

Shrayber's businesses included New England Trans Services Inc., IBF Transportation Inc., East-West Transportation Inc., Women in Transit Inc. and Delta Community Transportation Inc.

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