Council on Aging Fired Him for Cooperating With Probe of Medicare Fraud, HR Guy Says

      GAINESVILLE, Fla. (CN) – Its former head of human resources claims the Council on Aging of Florida fired him for cooperating with the Florida Attorney General Office’s investigation of Medicare fraud.
     Richard Castillo was Council on Aging of Florida’s chief HR man when the state began investigating it for Medicare fraud in January 2010, he says in his federal complaint.
     “Plaintiff made it very clear Ms. Darville, the CEO and primary shareholder, that he would be cooperating fully with the ‘State’ and respond to all their inquiries truthfully and to the best of his ability,” the complaint states.
     “Plaintiff communicated to Ms. Darville that he had shared truthful information with the state authorities regarding the handling of multiple sexual harassment complaints, the possible hiring of an illegal alien, and salaries that were given in excess of the corporate ‘approved plan’ to certain individuals for the positions they were in.”
     Castillo says the state’s investigation continued for more than a year, and that he cooperated with investigators, and also kept his bosses informed. He claims the Council on Aging “terminated plaintiff without cause in retaliation for his cooperation with State investigators and for sharing truthful information with the State Attorney General’s office.”
     And he says he wasn’t the only one: “Defendant terminated or caused to be terminated plaintiff, and other key officers, including COO Hennessy, and CFO Eckloff because of cooperation with investigators and their refusals to cover up the fraud and unlawful conduct.”
     Castillo seeks lost wages and damages for breach of contract and whistleblower violations. He is represented by Mitchell Feldman of Tampa.

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