NH Man Convicted for Stealing Nearly $14,000 in Workers' Compensation Benefits
Daniel Wilson, age 34, of Belmont, New Hampshire, was found guilty after a three day trial on the charge of Workers' Compensation Fraud.
"This defendant manipulated the workers' compensation system for his own personal benefit," said AG Martha Coakley. "Workers' compensation violations and the abuse of a system that helps many deserving recipients will not be tolerated in Massachusetts."
In May 2009 , the Attorney General's Office began an investigation after Wilson's activities were initially investigated and referred by the Insurance Fraud Bureau of Massachusetts (IFB). In August 2006, Wilson reportedly suffered an injury while working as a heavy machinery mechanic subcontractor on a work site in Milford, MA. After undergoing surgery for the injury in April 2007, Wilson began to collect workers' compensation benefits at an approximate rate of $857.00 per week from April 2007 through August 2007. The general contractor of the work site where Wilson was injured learned that during the relevant time period Wilson was employed as a sub-contractor for another construction company where he earned nearly $10,000 working while out on disability.
The general contractor brought the matter to the attention of the IFB to assess the validity of Wilson's workers' compensation claim. Investigators for the IFB discovered that Wilson fraudulently collected nearly $14,000 in worker's compensation benefits to which he was not entitled.
The IFB discovered that in August 2007, Wilson filled out and signed Employee Earnings Reports indicating that he did not receive any income while collecting workers compensation benefits. Wilson also attended independent medical exams which were required by his insurer due to his work related injury and at the exams he reported that he was not working. After completing its investigation, the IFB then referred the matter to the Attorney General's Office for prosecution.
AG Coakley's Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Division works to protect consumers and the integrity of the insurance system by investigating and prosecuting those who commit fraud against all types of insurers, including the Commonwealth's unemployment insurance and workers' compensation system. The prosecution of insurance fraud helps prevent the increase in premiums and taxes that are the result of fraudulent insurance claims. In 2010, the Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Division has obtained over $800,000 in restitution orders in 28 matters.
A Middlesex Grand Jury returned indictments against Wilson on June 3, 2010. Wilson was arraigned on June 21, 2010, in Middlesex Superior Court at which time he entered a plea of not guilty and was released on personal recognizance. The trial of Wilson began on June 13, 2011, and lasted three days. The jury deliberated for approximately one hour before returning a guilty verdict on all charges Wednesday afternoon. Middlesex Superior Court Judge Thomas Billings presided over the trial. Wilson will be sentenced at a later date.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Jennifer Cotter of AG Coakley's Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Division and was investigated by the IFB.