From the Insider.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina says company lobbyist Ken Wright has been cleared of any criminal wrongdoing in connection with allegations that he attempted to bribe a legislator. Blue Cross spokesman Lew Borman, in a written statement, said the company was informed that the SBI had concluded an investigation into the matter and that Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby would not be pursuing the matter any further.
Rep. Fred Steen, R-Rowan, in a complaint made to the Legislative Ethics Committee, claimed that Wright offered to forgive the debt of a doctor, Eric Troyer, who practices in Steen's district, in exchange for killing a bill addressing similar situations. Neither Wright, Steen nor Troyer were named in the complaint, but The Insider earlier confirmed that the three were the parties involved. Troyer told The Insider that Blue Cross alleged that he owed $400,000 in overpayments made over a period of four or five years. In response, the insurer began withholding payments for new claims, he said.
Steen again declined to comment on Monday night. Borman praised the SBI for a thorough and swift investigation. "They have found no wrongdoing and no crime," Borman said. "Ken is a valuable member of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield family and we are pleased that this matter is closed."(THE INSIDER, 6/30/09).