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 - August 23, 2012
Surveillance Video Shows Nurse's Aide Faked Need For Wheelchair (OH) - After fleeing to Hurricane, Utah to avoid prosecution, Robin Hammond has pled guilty to workers' compensation fraud, and her husband, Randy Hammond, has pled guilty to complicity. Robin Hammond was a nurse's aide and claimed a workplace injury left her unable to use her arms and legs and without fine motor skills in her hands and feet. Based on her diagnosis, she was granted permanent total disability and received special medical equipment, including an electric wheelchair and vehicle lift, a hospital bed and a Hoyer lift. A surveillance investigation later gathered hours of video evidence revealing that she had full use of all four limbs. Robin Hammond was regularly observed entering her physician's office in a wheelchair, then walking without assistance after leaving her appointments. The video also showed her husband, Randy, assisting her into a wheel chair on several occasions before entering the physician's office and later walking and talking with her without any apparent injury. Read more and download the video
Operator of Payroll Companies Charged with Federal Fraud and Money Laundering Crimes (NC) - Arthur S. Weiss has been indicted by a grand jury in North Carolina for tax fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, bank loan fraud, money laundering, and bankruptcy fraud. According to the indictment, Weiss operated professional employer organizations, which provided payroll-related services to client companies. For his client companies, Weiss agreed to pay the employees, withhold and remit federal and state taxes, prepare and file the federal and state employment tax returns, and provide workers compensation insurance. From 2004 to 2011, Weiss failed to file employment tax returns and failed to pay over to the IRS employment taxes of over $4 million. In addition, Weiss collected workers' compensation insurance premiums from his clients but failed to obtain adequate workers' compensation insurance protection, and diverted workers' compensation insurance premiums for his personal use. Weiss used a portion of his fraud proceeds to purchase expensive jewelry. During a trip to Europe, Weiss fraudulently reported four pieces of jewelry lost or stolen, and received $177,480 from his insurance company. The jewelry was later seized during a search at his former residence. Read more
Roofer Falsely Reported That His Employees Did Not Do Roofing Work (MT) - Jared Allen Langley has been charged with felony employer misconduct for falsely claiming that his employees did not repair roofs in order to lower his workers' compensation premiums. Langley reported to the Montana State Fund that his employees only cleaned up construction sites, while they allegedly were actually repairing roofs. During a five year period that he claimed he was not doing roofs, Langley took out 370 roofing permits and purchased $1.3 million in roofing materials. Read more
Another Arrest Made In "Operation Dirty Money" Workers' Comp Fraud Check Cashing Scheme (FL) - Zairis Cruz, an employee of I & T Financial Service, LLC, has been charged with 29 counts of money service business violations for her part in a $2.5 million fraudulent check cashing scheme. Cruz submitted 29 Currency Transaction Reports containing materially false information about the transactions to the Internal Revenue Service totaling over $2.5 million. "Operation Dirty Money" has been investigating workers' compensation fraud and money laundering in a large-scale check cashing scheme that has been operating to evade the cost of workers' compensation coverage. Read more
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