Higher Reimbursements Needed?

Lots of bling found in sting

By CHRISTOPHER BOBBY Tribune Chronicle

HOWLAND — A search warrant used in a case against a Howland woman accused of embezzling $1.5 million from a dialysis clinic in Boardman and unsealed Tuesday shows seven vehicles, a mink coat and photos of European vacations were obtained as evidence.

Deborah Toda, 48, of 201 Southwind Drive N.E., remained in jail Tuesday night before her arraignment scheduled in Austintown today. Boardman County Judge Joseph Houser recused himself from Toda’s case, citing a potential conflict of interest Tuesday morning. Instead, she will appear before Austintown County Court Judge David D’Apolito.

Toda was arrested Friday when Boardman and Howland police raided her fashionable home in an upscale Howland development, executing the search warrant to recover what the warrant states is ‘‘evidence of theft.’’

Toda, already on federal parole until November after a 2001 conviction for a similar scheme against a Niles company that landed her in prison, is now charged with aggravated theft by deception.

She served 26 of a 30-month sentence in the previous case in Niles.

On Friday police had used a warrant from Trumbull County Common Pleas Judge Peter Kontos to seize seven vehicles that were taken to a secured storage lot at Pantalone Towing in Niles. The vehicles included two BMWs and two high-end Jeep SUVs. Also taken were titles, lease agreements and receipts for the vehicles, according to the search warrants that were unsealed in Trumbull Common Pleas Court on Tuesday.

Inside police gathered bank checks and financial records, some of them on a computer that also was taken. They also took a woman’s red wallet containing 22 credit cards and a black mink coat.

Besides photographs of trips to Italy, Paris and London, police collected several pieces of jewelry, including Rolex wristwatches, the warrant shows.