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The Fraud Report

WA Card Dealer Charged for Comp Fraud

by FraudReport 26. June 2015 11:07

Sometimes you may think part of a card dealer’s job is to take your money. However, one Washington man working as a card dealer was allegedly taking money from a much larger source, the state. He was recently charged with stealing workers’ compensation benefits because he was employed at casinos in Spokane, though he had claimed to be too injured to work.

According to Washington State Dept. of Labor & Industries (L&I) and The Washington Attorney General’s office, an investigation by L&I led to the charges.

Victor O. Arredondo, 58, was scheduled to be arraigned on June 15th in Spokane County Superior Court. He was charged with a felony count of first-degree theft for allegedly stealing over $27,000 in wage-replacement checks and vocational rehabilitation services from the L&I.

Officials say Arredondo claimed to have hurt his back in May 2013 while working as a card dealer. L&I opened a claim for him, and two doctors and a nurse practitioner certified that he was entitled to wage-replacement payments. He received the benefits from June 2013 through March 2014.

But investigators say he kept working the entire time, and the subsequent investigation proved their theory correct. Instead of working where he was injured, he was hired at two other casinos in Spokane.

Arredondo’s medical providers told L&I that if he had told them he was working, they would not have certified him to receive the state benefits, charging papers said.

This issue was brought to light after L&I data was cross-matched with those of other state agencies.

Elizabeth Smith, who directs L&I’s Fraud Prevention & Labor Standards, said, “This case serves as a warning to people who fake or exaggerate workers’ comp injuries. Odds are, we’ll track you down. We have safeguards in place to detect fraud, and protect the workers’ comp system for truly injured workers.”

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Categories: Scandalous Schemes

Former IA Deputy Sheriff Sentenced for Fraud

by FraudReport 16. June 2015 11:07

A former deputy sheriff, who was also a volunteer firefighter, was recently sentenced to 13 years in federal prison for submitting a fraudulent insurance claim after deliberately setting his vacant home on fire.

James Marvin Plower, 50, pled guilty on 20, 2015 to one count of mail fraud and one count of using fire to commit a federal felony.

During his plea hearing, according to a Northern District of Iowa Department of Justice press release, Plower admitted that he made up a scheme to defraud his insurance company, between about July 2013 and August 2014. He said, as part of the scheme, he deliberately set fire to his vacant Iowa home and then submitted an insurance claim in which he falsely claimed the fire was accidental.

Plower was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade. Plower was sentenced to 13 years’ imprisonment to be followed by 3 years’ supervised release. He was ordered to make $152,874.58 in restitution to the victim insurance company. There is no parole in the federal system.

Plower was released on bond and is to surrender to the Bureau of Prisons on a future date.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Peter Deegan and investigated by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Iowa State Fire Marshal Division, and the Jones County Sheriff’s Department.

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Categories: Scandalous Schemes