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Published: Wednesday, 5/19/2010

Pair plead not guilty to fraudulent billings

Two men charged with orchestrating a scheme that resulted in the theft of more than $150,000 from Toledo Hospital appeared before a Lucas County Common Pleas Court judge yesterday.

John Briggle, 56, and Leonard P. Gorski, 55, both of Toledo, each pleaded not guilty to a charge of aggravated theft, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. The men are accused of fraudulent billings to the hospital between May, 2002, and July, 2004.

Authorities believe the men orchestrated a scheme in which Mr. Briggle's printing company billed the hospital for about $150,000 worth of supplies and services that were not delivered. Mr. Gorski worked as a manager in the hospital's print shop until 2004.

Judge James Bates set a June 15 trial date. Both men were booked into the county jail and then released on their own recognizance.

Mr. Briggle is charged in Cuyahoga County in an unrelated case involving the alleged embezzlement of money from Cleveland Public Schools with a co-defendant, Dan Burns. The scheme is similar to one investigators believe occurred at Toledo Public Schools, also allegedly involving Mr. Briggle and Mr. Burns, a former TPS administrator.

In that case, in excess of $500,000 is believed to have been stolen from the school district.

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