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Education


Trial set in alleged theft of $392,000 from Cuyahoga Heights schools
Barnarr King is accused of being part of the ring setup by Cuyahoga Heights' former IT director, Joseph Palazzo, to send phony invoices to the district
by WKSU's KABIR BHATIA


Reporter
Kabir Bhatia
 
Last year, former Cuyahoga Heights IT Director Joseph Palazzo was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison after pleading guilty to stealing $3.4 million from the district through phony invoicing
Courtesy of Cuyahoga Heights Schools
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The trial is set to begin this week for a man who allegedly helped steal more than $3.4 million from the Cuyahoga Heights School District. WKSU's Kabir Bhatia reports.
Trial set in alleged theft of $392,000 from Cuyahoga Heights schools

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Barnarr King of Canal Fulton is the only defendant scheduled for trial after being named in a 39-count indictment last year. He's accused of invoicing close to $400,000 in computer equipment and services in 2009 and 2010 that Cuyahoga Heights says it never received.

It's allegedly part of a scheme run by the district's former IT director, Joseph Palazzo. He resigned in 2011 after the financial irregularities came to light, and the move caused the district to pull a 6.9-mill levy from the ballot. He pleaded guilty last year to fraud and money laundering when investigators discovered fake invoices were paid to shell companies controlled by associates.

Palazzo was sentenced last summer to 11 years and 4 months in prison, and ordered to make restitution. State Auditor Dave Yost says some of Palazzo’s property has been seized to repay the district.
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