Former Wayne County aide gets prison time for kickbacks

Michael Grundy will spend 7 years in prison, pay back at least $500,000

DETROIT - Former Wayne County assistant executive Michael Grundy will spend several years in prison after taking a plea deal in a case that accused him of accepting kickbacks when he was at the helm of the county's health care program.

Grundy was sentenced Tuesday to seven and a-half years in prison, to be followed by three years of probation. He will also pay at least $500,000 in restitution. 

Federal prosecutors say Grundy abused his power as head of county health care programs by starting a kickback scheme that allowed him to collect almost $700,000 in cash, cashier's checks and money orders. He was working on a scheme to get even more money through kickbacks. He also obtained a one-third's share in a $50,000 Caribbean time share.

View/download: Sentencing memorandum for Michael Grundy

According to prosecutors, Grundy used his fiancée to launder about $120,000. Among the items purchased with that money were $10,000 hair plugs bought before the couple's wedding. The rest of the money was spent on items including floor tiles for his home, Delta Airlines flights, appliances, electronics, designer clothing -- specifically $3,135.33 paid to Louis Vuitton -- and cable bills.

Grundy took office in 2008. Prosecutors say he began scheming and stealing money almost immediately. Many of the purchases listed above were made in 2011.

He was fired from his post as aide to county Executive Robert Ficano in November 2012. He was indicted on extortion, accepting kickbacks and seven charges including money laundering and conspiracy to launder money.

Keith Griffin, who was originally charged with Grundy, pleaded guilty to charges testified against Grundy.

In his deal, Grundy pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. 

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