A Toms River osteopath might spend as many as five years in prison, for taking thousands of dollars to refer patients to two blood-testing lab companies.

Vincent Destasio, 54, pleaded guilty Thursday to a count of conspiracy to accept cash bribes, according to informatoin from the office of New Jesey U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman.

Destasio admitted taking kickbacks from Daniel Gillman, 63, or Ocean Grove, and Kenneth Robberson, 46, of Wall Township, partners in the PROMED marketing and sales firm representing blood and DNA labs. Both previously pleaded guilty to related charges and also await sentencing.

According to investigators, the partners paid Destasio from March 2014 through May 2015. Principals of the blood analysis and DNA testing labs involved were not aware of the arrangement.

Using monthly commissions paid by the labs, Gilman and Robberson paid Destasio for the number of patients he referred.

Destasio also risks a fine as high as $250,000, or twice the gross gain represented by the payments.

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