December 22, 2016 | Kimerer & Derrick – Clark L. Derrick
The owner of a Phoenix body-donation tissue company who pleaded guilty to illegally conducting an enterprise was sentenced Friday to one year of deferred jail time. Stephen Gore, 48, the owner of Biological Resource Center of America, was the subject of a two-year investigation by the FBI and the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, which found that he provided vendors with contaminated human tissue and ignored donors’ requests for the bodies. He pleaded guilty in October to charges of illegally conducting an enterprise, a class-three non-dangerous felony.
At the sentencing Friday, a teary-eyed Gore sat and listened as seven members of his family, including his wife, daughter and three siblings, lauded him as a family man who was empathetic, helpful, ethical and moral. Gore then took the stand and read a statement admitting to his mistakes, but saying they were not made for financial gain.
Clark L. Derrick his criminal defense lawyer, said the company made $900,000 in its last nine years of operation. “ Ten years ago, I started Biological Resource Center of America,” Gore said. “The mistakes that were made we thought were made in the best intentions of the donor.” Judge Warren Granville acknowledged the statements and then read the sentence, which was met with loud gasps from Gore’s family. Granville ordered Gore to report to court Dec. 9, 2016 for the start of his jail term. The judge also sentenced Gore to four years of probation and ordered him to pay upward of $100,000 in restitution. Derrick said after the sentencing that, if Gore cooperates with his probation, the jail time could be deferred or eliminated. “I think it was a fair sentence,” Derrick said. “The judge made a finding that admits mistakes, but makes it clear they weren’t premeditated mistakes.”
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