Former Top Official Pleads Guilty in Workers’ Comp Scandal

A former top official at the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation pleaded guilty today to state and federal charges of taking bribes.

Prosecutors say 59-year-old Terrence Gasper authorized government investment opportunities at the agency in exchange for college tuition for his son and stays at a Florida condominium.

He also took $25,000 from Toledo-area coin dealer Tom Noe, who pleaded guilty last month to making illegal campaign contributions to President Bush’s re-election campaign.

Gasper appeared in a federal court in Akron and later in Franklin County Common Pleas Court in Columbus. He faces up to seven years and three months in prison on the federal charge.

Prosecutors say Gasper is cooperating in their continued investigation into a scandal that has shaken the state’s Republican-dominated government.