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Cuomo campaign returns $6G from nursing home owner

Andrew Cuomo's campaign for governor returned $6,000 in contributions from a prominent nursing home company owner, Benjamin Landa, who gave the money while one of his businesses was under investigation by the attorney general's office.

In September 2007, a Cuomo spokeswoman said he would not accept money from Landa, or from his Long Island finance chairman, Howard Fensterman. Landa's company, Excellent Home Care, was being probed for Medicaid fraud, and Fensterman was trying to buy a stake in it.

Cuomo closed the investigation last December - after Excellent paid a $3.7-million settlement. On Nov. 24, five Landa-owned nursing homes made the $6,000 donation. A Cuomo spokesman said, "Out of an abundance of caution, and in keeping with the campaign's own internal rules, the funds were returned." Fensterman made an in-kind contribution of $3,500 that wasn't returned. - Michael Amon

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