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Howard Root started Vascular Solutions with little more than a dream and an idea for a single medical device. Fifteen years later, his Minnesota company had created over 500 American jobs and developed more than 50 new medical devices that saved and improved lives.
But in 2011, the federal government threatened to destroy his company and put Howard behind bars for years. Why?
Federal prosecutors had been sold a bill of goods - a tall tale peddled by a money-hungry ex-employee out for revenge. All over one device. A device that never harmed a single patient and made up less than 1% of the company's sales.
The investigation revealed the charges to be baseless, but the scalp-hunting prosecutors didn't back off. Instead they dug in - threatening witnesses, misleading grand juries, and strategically leaking secret documents. Whatever it took to pressure a headline-grabbing settlement.
Howard Root stood up to the shakedown. Five years, 121 attorneys, and $25 million in legal fees later, his life's work and freedom rested in the hands of 12 strangers in a San Antonio jury room. Would Howard and his company be vindicated by the verdict, or had he made the biggest mistake of his life by challenging the federal government?
Cardiac Arrest is the eye-opening true story of life on the Feds' hit-list, told from the desk of a CEO who decided to fight back. Follow Howard from the boardroom to the courtroom as he tells the inside story of the case that sparked outrage in the pages of The Wall Street Journal and triggered a congressional investigation.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Wayne on 05-06-17
Must read non-fiction about US justice system
Cardiac Arrest is the story in Howard Root's on words of how the US Justice Department aided by an employee at the FDA set out to put Vascular Solutions, the publicly traded healthcare company he founded almost 20 earlier, out of business and send him to jail for years. Finally, in February 2016 after 5 years and spending $25 million on legal fees and a jury trial lasting several weeks the jury found Howard Root and Vascular Solutions not guilty on all 15 government charges. Charges were eventually dropped against two other employees who were charged with crimes because they would not lie to help the prosecutors win their case. The government's case was so weak that the defense decided to rest without calling a single witness.
The US Justice Department had to be aware that Howard Root and Vascular Solutions were totally innocent of the crimes with which they were charged but decided to let their prosecutors go forward with the prosecution. In this case the prosecutors simply chose the wrong man for their false prosecution. Howard Root is wealthy AND he was willing to expose himself to potential imprisonment in order to clear his name and that of the company he founded and ran. Most people in a similar situation would cut a deal and pay a huge fine even if wealthy in order to avoid time in prison.
In a fair system the prosecutors who pursued this case from 2011 to 2016 would themselves be in jail today, but they are immune from prosecution. Indeed, they suffer no penalty whatever which is amazing when one considers the openly dishonest tactics they used. They will not be held accountable in any way for their actions.
Most prosecutors are honest and exercise great care to be fair and reasonable. But the immunity that goes with their jobs frees those who are willing to go "headhunting" for perceived easy, but innocent, prey assures them that the risk penalty is near zero.
Cardiac Arrest is an important book that all US citizens should read.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful
By Anonymous User on 08-22-17
Riveting and deeply moving story
This book should be read required reading for students across the country. Its witty, subtle and utterly necessary expose of regulatory and prosecutorial overreach should be a wake up call for people across the political spectrum.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful