For Immediate Release - June 29, 2011

Owner of Lowell Staffing Company Indicted for Workers' Compensation Fraud

Allegedly Stole $110,000 As Part Of Intentional Scheme

WOBURN - The owner of a Lowell staffing company has been indicted for allegedly underreporting the size and scope of his business operations in order to avoid paying approximately $110,000 in workers' compensation premiums, Attorney General Martha Coakley's Office announced today.

A Middlesex Grand Jury returned indictments against Dara Duong, age 53, of Lowell, on charges of Workers' Compensation Fraud (3 counts) and Larceny over $250 (2 counts).

"All employers in Massachusetts have the responsibility of protecting the safety of their employees. We allege that Mr. Duong failed in his duty by knowingly failing to pay the proper amount of workers' compensation insurance," AG Coakley said.

In October 2010, the AG's Office began an investigation after the Massachusetts Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) finished its own investigation and referred the matter for prosecution. Duong was the owner of three companies based in Lowell: Middlesex Temporary Agency (Middlesex), Ankgor Staffing, Inc. (Ankgor) and General Labor Services (General Labor). All three companies provided unskilled labor, such as factory workers, to several client companies.

Authorities allege that from 2006 through 2008, Duong intentionally underreported his companies' payroll, the total number of employees, and the number of clients his employees worked for, as well as misrepresented job classifications as part of a scheme to avoid paying higher workers' compensation premiums to two insurance companies. Investigators discovered that based on Duong's false representations on his insurance policies, he avoided paying approximately $110,000 in workers' compensation premiums for a total of three policy periods.

A Middlesex Grand Jury returned indictments against Duong yesterday. He is scheduled to be arraigned in Middlesex Superior Court on July 14, 2011.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Audrey Cosgrove, of AG Coakley's Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Division, and was originally investigated by the IFB.