Court upholds conviction of ex-hospital exec in RI

Providence, R.I. – The former president of Roger Williams Medical Center may be headed to prison soon. A federal appeals court has affirmed his corruption conviction.

Attorneys for Robert Urciuoli challenged his corruption conviction on the grounds that the judge gave improper instructions to the jury. But the first U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected that argument and upheld his convictions of conspiracy and mail fraud for buying the influence of former state Sen. John Celona.

Assistant U.S. attorney Ken Madden says barring any further appeals, Urciuoli will report to court to receive instructions on where and when to report to prison to serve his three year sentence.

Jurors found that Urciuoli contracted with Celona to make sure that legislation favorable to the hospital was advanced and bills deemed harmful were killed.

Urciuoli's attorney, Boston-based Martin Weinberg, did not return a call for comment.