State Lawsuit Seeks Removal Of Ceo And Administrator Of Brooklyn Nursing Homes

Attorney General Spitzer today filed a lawsuit seeking the removal of the CEO of the Marcus Garvey Nursing Home, Inc. and the Administrator of Ruby Weston Manor, two not-for-profit nursing homes in Brooklyn. The Attorney General’s lawsuit also seeks rescission and restitution of excessive compensation paid to Ruby Weston from her positions as a Board member and her son, Earl Weston, who was a computer consultant to both facilities and repayment by Weston of interest on unauthorized loans.

The Attorney General’s lawsuit alleges that Weston circumvented board oversight at the nursing homes and thereby enriched herself and her family. Weston self-approved her salary and benefits, which grew to more than $500,000 per year, advancedherself funds from the facilities interest free, and enabled her son to be paid more than $1.7 million for computer consulting work. Weston also eluded internal controls by choosing a close personal friend to serve as the Chairperson of both facilities’ Boards of Directors and as a required co-signatory on checks, although his signature on those checks was obtained through the use of a stamp that was in Weston’s control.

In 2006, the State Department of Health and the federal agency that oversees Medicare and Medicaid, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, found on two occasions that residents of the Marcus Garvey Nursing Home were subject to substandard quality of care and that the health and safety of residents of the Home were in immediate jeopardy. The Home currently is a Special Focus Facility subject to monthly inspections by DOH to ensure improvements to the quality of care provided to the Home’ s residents.

The Attorney General’s lawsuit seeks removal of Weston from her positions as CEO of the Home and the Administrator of the Manor, as well as her removal as a Board member of each facility. The lawsuit also seeks return of excessive compensation paid to Weston by the Home and payment of interest on loans Weston advanced herself from both facilities. In addition, the lawsuit seeks restitution for monies that, at Weston’s direction and without approval by either board, were paid to Weston’s son, Earl Weston, who, starting in 1998 served as a computer consultant to both facilities. Such payments to a director’s family member should have been, but were not, disclosed on both entities’ IRS Forms 990, which Weston herself signed for the years 1998, 1999 and 2001.
This matter was handled by Carrie H. Cohen, Chief of the Public Integrity Unit and Sally G. Blinken, Assistant Attorney General, Charities Bureau under the supervision of Gerald Rosenberg, Assistant Attorney General in Charge of the Charities Bureau.