Workers' Comp Fraud Blotter (7/25/2013) – Husband Used Wife’s Social Security Number To Hide His Secret Jobs While On Disability

Each week we'll be surveying what the media, state agencies, insurance companies, and others report in terms of workers' comp fraud. Just like a police blotter, our workers' comp fraud blotter lists recent arrests, charges, convictions and investigations.

 

Workers' Comp Fraud Blotter – July 25, 2013

Husband Used Wife’s Social Security Number To Hide His Secret Jobs While On Disability (SC) – Joseph Curto and Catherine Curto have entered guilty pleas in federal court to theft of government funds. In 1992, Joseph began receiving Social Security Disability and Ohio Workers Compensation benefits for a back injury. In 2001, Joseph began working at various jobs and also married Catherine. Catherine then allowed Joseph to use her Social Security number when working. Joseph’s employers used Catherine's social security number when filing 10-99's, thus allowing Joseph to hide the fact that he was working.   Read more

Claimant Hid Secondary Income From Insurer (MS) – Alisa Salonica has been arrested as a result of an indictment for workers’ compensation fraud.  The indictment alleges that Salonica made false or misleading statements to Bridgefield Casualty Insurance Company in order to obtain workers’ compensation benefits by falsely stating that she was not receiving any secondary income.   Read more

Disability Income Is Not Always a Piece of Cake (TX) – Maria Perez, a 68 year old grandmother, has been charged with making a false statement for collecting federal workers’ compensation benefits while she baked cakes. Perez injured her back in 1995 while working as a civilian employee at the now closed Kelly Air Force Base. The authorities discovered that during 2011 she earned income while working in her daughter’s cake business.   Read more

Employer Tried To Withhold Money From Employee’s Paycheck For Canceled Workers’ Compensation Insurance (MS) – John Steele, doing business as Jay’s Express Courier Service, has been arrested following an indictment on one count of false pretense. Steele is alleged to have obtained money from the victim by making false pretenses or representations that the money being withheld from the victim’s payroll check was for workers’ compensation insurance at a time when the policy had been canceled due to non-payment.   Read more

Court Affirms Insurance Fraud Conviction But Reverses Restitution Order (CA) – The Court of Appeal of California has upheld the conviction of Michael Petronella on 33 counts of insurance fraud, but has reversed the order that he make restitution in the amount of $500,000. Petronella owned several businesses, and he reported to the State Compensation Insurance Fund that one of the businesses was dormant, causing the dormant business to be removed from his workers’ compensation insurance policy. In fact, the business was active and employed a substantial number of employees, but the payroll was not calculated in the rates that Petronella was charged for workers’ compensation coverage.   Read more

Injured Worker Lied About Receiving Secondary Income While Receiving Benefits (MS) – Issac Lee has been charged with workers’ compensation fraud for allegedly misrepresenting to Chartis Insurance Company that he was not receiving a secondary income while receiving workers’ compensation benefits.   Read more

Town Selectwoman’s Trial For Fraud and Tax Evasion Begins (ME) – Carole Swan’s trial on charges of Hobbs Act extortion, making false statements in federal income tax returns, making false statements to obtain worker's compensation benefits, and obtaining over $5,000 by fraud from a program receiving federal funds has begun. Swan is accused of seeking workers' compensation benefits while claiming that she could not clean her house or even blow dry her own hair by herself, while she was secretly working for her husband’s company, Marshall Swan Construction. On one day of the trial, she was seen walking stiffly and dragging one leg as if she was injured. But on the day before, she had not appeared to be injured.   Read more

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