Miami Chiropractor Mark Cereceda Arrested Over Campaign Contributions
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by: DrTirpak posted: March 13, 2013
Chiropractor Mark Cereceda’s political antics finally caught up with him. Dr. Mark Cereceda was arrested on Friday February 22nd in Hialeah FL for orchestrating illegal campaign contributions to numerous Florida State elected officials. Charges were filed against Dr. Mark Cereceda, his office Florida Wellness & Rehabilitation Center , and his brother.
The alleged crime involved Dr. Mark Cereceda asking over 30 of his employees in his 6 Chiropractic Clinics to contribute to various political campaigns throughout the state, and then he would reimburse their contributions. Florida law allows an individual or company to only donate $500 per candidate. According to the arrest warrant Dr. Cereceda is believed to have donated over $25,000 to various candidates over the past 2 years. The recipients include Florida Senate President Don Gaetz and State Senator Joe Negron investigators reported that the candidates were not aware that the contributions were illegal. Mark Cereceda DC has been charged with one felony and one misdemeanor relating to illegal contributions.
This is not Dr. Mark Cereceda first time in the press over questionable political dealing. In May of 2007 Dr. Cereceda’s mother Nora Cereceda purchased a home from Marco Rubio, at the time Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, coinciding with a state congressional debate over the renewal of the PIP insurance laws in Florida. Shortly after the sale and some political negotiations Rubio changed his mind and supported the bill. The sale price of the home reflected comparable home sales in the area according to public records. At the time Dr. Cecrceda had been heavily lobbying for passage of the Florida’s no-fault PIP legislation.
Last year another storm brewed around Dr. Mark Cereceda, a County Judge and his corporation Florida Wellness & Rehabilitation Center. Dr. Cereceda’s accountant sent the Florida Division of Corporations documents dissolving his corporation prematurely before he reincorporated. A Miami-Dade County Court Judge, Ana Maria Pando, wrote a letter on her official Judicial stationary to the Director of Corporations in Florida asking the agency to reinstate the Dr. Cereceda’s corporation Florida Wellness. At the time Judge Ana Maria Pando had numerous PIP suits cases before her in which Dr. Mark Cereceda was the plaintiff. (PIP suits result when providers seek payment of personal injury claims that were not paid by the insurance carrier.) Florida State documents indicated the corporation was reactivated by a "court order". Dr. Cereceda’s corporations shortly after the reinstatement contributed over $2,500 to Judge Pando’s re-election campaign.
Numerous attorneys charged Judge Pando with violating the Code of Judicial Conduct and the Florida Judicial Qualifications Commission accused Judge Pando of not reporting a financial gift from Dr. Mark Cereceda. Earlier this year the Florida Judicial Qualifications Commission dropped all charges against Judge Ana Maria Pando following her promise never to seek a judgeship again.
Dr. Cereceda, a 1993 Life University Doctor of Chiropractic graduate, owns 6 personal injury clinics in Miami Dade county Florida.