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January 25, 2015

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Nurse in hepatitis C case pleads not guilty

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A nurse anaesthetist charged in connection with the 2008 hepatitis C outbreak in Las Vegas pleaded not guilty Wednesday in Clark County District Court.

Ronald Ernest Lakeman, 63, was arrested earlier this month in Columbus, Ga., and will stand trial with Dr. Dipak Desai, 60, and anaesthetist Keith Mathahs on March 14, 2011.

Desai, who ran the Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada, Mathahs and Lakeman were indicted by a grand jury on 28 criminal counts related to the hepatitis C scare that affected some 50,000 Southern Nevada residents.

The felony charges include racketeering, performance of an act in reckless disregard of persons or property, criminal neglect of patients, insurance fraud, theft and obtaining money under false pretenses.

Judge Elissa Caddish had set a $500,000 bail for Mathahs and Lakeman. Court records indicate Mathahs and Lakeman have posted bail.

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