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Local health care executive pleads guilty to theft

Tom Rivers

A local health care executive has pleaded guilty to stealing $318,000 from Buffalo Rheumatology and Medicine in Orchard Park.

The Erie County District Attorney's Office says William Gajewski, 56, has pleaded guilty to stealing $318,000 from the practice when he was office manager. Gajewski of Amherst pleaded guilty Wednesday to grand larceny in the second degree, forgery in the second degree and criminal tax fraud in the fourth degree.

The DA says in 2015 and 2016, Gajewski admitted to forged documents for false expenses to support checks, which he deposited into his personal bank account. He also admitted failing to pay $11,744 in back taxes from 2016. He has since repaid the entire amount.

A University at Buffalo and Penn State graduate, Gajewski also is a former Board Chair for Lake Shore Behavioral Health, President of Western New York Breast Health, Executive Director of St. Vincent Medical Group and Vice President at Erie County Medical Center.

He faces a maximum of 19 years in prison when he's sentenced in August 1.