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Federal judge sentences two attorneys for defrauding Johnson Controls of $4.5 million

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A federal judge has sentenced two attorneys for defrauding Johnson Controls out of $4.5 million.

U.S. District Judge J.P. Stadtmueller sentenced 54-year-old Scott Hess of Menomonee Falls to 32 months in prison on June 15. The judge sentenced 55-year-old Craig Hilborn of Birmingham, Michigan, to 21 months in prison on Thursday. Both pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud earlier this year.

According to prosecutors, Hess worked as a Johnson Controls in-house attorney in Milwaukee until late 2015. Hilborn ran his own law firm in Michigan.

Hess created fake invoices that caused Johnson Controls to pay Hilborn's firm for legal work that the firm never performed. The two carried out the scheme for 15 years, from 2000 until 2015, stealing about $4.5 million from the company.

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