Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Ruskin man faked ID to get pharmacist jobs

RUSKIN — A family member said Gregory Klonowski gave "110 percent" to the pharmacies that employed him. As it turned out, it wasn't his to give.

The Ruskin resident stole the identity of a pharmacist in Arizona, obtained his own Florida pharmacy license and worked at numerous pharmacies across Central Florida for nearly a decade. Some of his bosses called him an ideal employee. He earned promotions.

In fact, when he changed pharmacies in the Orlando area, some of his customers followed him.

But a federal judge in Orlando sentenced Klonowski, 49, to 3 1/2 years in prison Thursday on charges of mail fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering after he pleaded guilty in July. He must then serve three years of supervised release.

U.S. District Court Judge Anne Conway also told Klonowski he has to live his life as a Klonowski, not the fraudulent identity he stole — Allen Schleicher. Klonowski also forfeited his Ruskin home, which was purchased on his pharmacy salary.

Klonowski's attorney said his client attended college to become a pharmacist, but ran out of money before getting a degree.

"For the better part of the last decade, Mr. Schleicher pursued his career with passion and professionalism," Stephen Langs, Klonowski's lawyer, said in a sentencing memorandum. "He proved to be an able pharmacist, a knowledgeable and educated participant in the industry."

Klonowski just didn't want to give up his dream of being a pharmacist.

In 2004, after he had already started to work as a pharmacist, Klonowski legally changed his name to Schleicher in Illinois. He first worked at a temp agency that hired him out to pharmacies in the Orlando area, including Walgreens and CVS. At the time, Klonowski lived in Altamonte Springs. Later, Rx Care Pharmacy in Lady Lake hired him as a full-time employee.

In 2007, the IRS contacted the real Schleicher, who had never worked in Florida, to ask about undeclared income. He discovered his ID had been stolen.

One customer wasn't happy with Klonowski. She filled a thyroid hormone prescription with him in 2008. But Klonowski, prosecutors said, failed to dilute the drug, giving her a massive overdose. The woman nearly died, prosecutors said.

"I think he should have gone to school and got his own license," the real Schleicher said in a letter to the judge. "Why me? I don't even remember meeting him."

Ruskin man faked ID to get pharmacist jobs 11/01/12 [Last modified: Thursday, November 1, 2012 8:13pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Video: Rays Souza on that oh-so-bad dive, and reaction from Twins fans

    Blogs

    What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking when he made that oh-so-bad dive for a ball in the seventh inning Friday? Well, we'll let him tell you ...

  2. What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking on that comically bad dive?

    Blogs

    What could Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. been thinking in the seventh inning Friday when he dove for a ball and came up yards short?

    Actually, he insisted after all the laughing, teasing and standing ovation from the Twins fans was done, it was a matter of self-preservation.

  3. Judge tosses life sentences for D.C. sniper Lee Boyd Malvo

    Nation

    McLEAN, Va. — A federal judge on Friday tossed out two life sentences for one of Virginia's most notorious criminals, sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, and ordered Virginia courts to hold new sentencing hearings.

    A federal judge has tossed out two life sentences for D.C. sniper shooter Lee Boyd Malvo. [Associated Press, 2004]
  4. Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter's national security adviser, dies

    News

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, the hawkish strategic theorist who was national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter in the tumultuous years of the Iran hostage crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the late 1970s, died on Friday at a hospital in Virginia. He was 89.

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, former national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, participates in Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Capitol Hill on March 5, 2009, in Washington, D.C. [Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]
  5. USF eliminated by UCF in AAC baseball; Florida, FSU, Miami win

    Colleges

    CLEARWATER — Roughly 16 hours after a ninth-inning collapse against East Carolina in the American Athletic Conference's double-elimination baseball tournament, USF returned to Spectrum Field presumably set for a reboot.

    It simply got booted instead.

    ’NOLES win: Tyler Holton gets a hug from Drew Carlton after his strong eight innings help Florida State beat Louisville.