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Feds subpoena Health Department for records related to Cranston chiropractor

Politics

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Another federal subpoena has surfaced related to the Cranston chiropractor who was steered millions by Rhode Island lawmakers in order to provide an unsanctioned medical treatment.

The R.I. Department of Health confirmed Monday it received a subpoena from the U.S. Justice Department on June 25 for all records related to the chiropractor, Victor Pedro, who has cultivated high-level State House connections over the years.

Pedro had been in the headlines just before the subpoena was issued after a public outcry forced House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello to take $1 million in Medicaid funding for Pedro out of the budget.

Gov. Gina Raimondo had repeatedly tried to axe the funding in years past after federal Medicaid leaders questioned Pedro’s work, but Mattiello had always restored it.

Joseph Wendelken, a spokesperson for the Health Department, said he was “limited in what I can say” and declined to comment beyond confirming the subpoena, which was first reported by The Boston Globe.

The R.I. Executive Office of Health and Human Services received a similar subpoena a month later, in July, as Target 12 has previously reported.

On Monday, the Executive Office of Health and Human Services denied a public records request by Target 12 for a copy of the actual subpoena.

“The subpoena states that the information sought is related to an ongoing federal investigation and further, that its disclosure may impede an ongoing investigation and interfere with the enforcement of the law,” Amy Coleman, the office’s deputy chief legal counsel, wrote in a letter explaining the denial.

It remains unclear what specifically federal investigators are or were looking at in connection with Pedro, who has not responded to phone calls or emails in recent months.

Eli Sherman (esherman@wpri.com) is a Target 12 investigative reporter for WPRI 12. Follow him on Twitter

Ted Nesi (tnesi@wpri.com) is WPRI 12’s politics and business editor and a Target 12 investigative reporter. He is a weekly panelist on Newsmakers and hosts Executive Suite. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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