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Lobbyist facing more charges of scamming small businesses

September 17, 2019 News Extra

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A Pittsburgh-based lobbyist charged last month with scamming at least six small businesses out of hundreds of thousands of dollars faces more charges after additional nonprofits and schools came forward following his initial arrest.

Joseph Kuklis, 48, of Pittsburgh, was initially charged in August by the state attorney general with corrupt organizations, deceptive or fraudulent business practices, forgery and theft by deception. He operated a Pittsburgh government consulting firm known as Wellington Strategies.

On Tuesday, Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced additional charges against Kuklis after 14 more small businesses, nonprofits, universities and schools came forward to allege that they too were victims of his crimes. Among the most recent group of accusers were the Regional Learning Alliance in Cranberry Township, the Allegheny River Development Corporation in Kittanning and the It's All About the Warrior Foundation in Pittsburgh.

The attorney general's office said the investigation is ongoing and there might be additional victims. Potential victims of Joseph Kuklis are asked to call 412-880-0464.

This is an excerpt — pick up Wednesday's Butler Eagle to read the full article.

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