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Former Fleishman execs convicted in L.A.

By AP/KWMU

Los Angeles – Two former executives of St. Louis-based public relations firm Fleishman-Hillard have been convicted of fraud and conspiracy in Los Angeles.

Tuesday a federal jury found Douglas Dowie and John Stodder Jr. guilty of bilking Los Angeles taxpayers and others out of more than $300,000 over four years.

Dowie is the one-time head of Fleishman-Hillard's Los Angeles office. Stodder worked as Dowie's aide.

The two were charged with illegally padding bills for consulting services paid by the Los Angeles Water Department and other clients.

Fleishman-Hillard was never charged with a crime, although the international public relations firm paid nearly $6 million last year to settle a lawsuit alleging repeated overbilling.

A sentencing date for Dowie and Stodder will be set later.

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