Fraud scheme doesn’t float for Ohio swimming pool business owner

A Mansfield-area businessman must pay more than $33,000 in restitution to the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation for filing phony records and scheming to avoid his debt for past premiums.

Roger L. Graszl, the owner of Premier Gunite Unlimited Pools & Spas in Lexington, Ohio, also was sentenced to five years probation Wednesday in the Richland County Court of Common Pleas. The sentencing followed his guilty plea Sept. 13 to two third-degree felony counts of tampering with records.

“We discovered Mr. Graszl wasn’t carrying workers’ compensation insurance after one of his employees was injured and filed for benefits,” said Dan Fodor, assistant director of BWC’s special investigations department. “We tried multiple times to bring Mr. Graszl into compliance, but he failed to cooperate.”

Fodor said Graszl also tried several times to obtain a certificate of coverage from BWC using fictitious information on his application.

“He thought he could sneak in under our radar and obtain a certificate so he could continue to operate his business,” Fodor said. “Obviously, it didn’t work. It’s pretty hard to fool BWC and our agents.”

Ohio law requires businesses to carry workers’ compensation coverage.

Graszl owes BWC $27,516 for past premiums and $5,833 for the cost of the agency’s investigation.

To report suspected workers’ compensation fraud, call 1-800-644-6292 or visit bwc.ohio.gov.

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