Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter and Massachusetts Department of Revenue Commissioner Alan LeBovidge today announced that Robert J. Scrima, featured on DOR's most recent Ten Most Wanted poster, was arrested in Las Vegas last week. Scrima waived rendition Tuesday and will be transported back to Massachusetts to face a felony charge of failing to comply with a state support order in Fall River District Court.

Scrima, 48, a former dental lab technician from Swansea, owes $26,907 for the care of his daughter. The Child Support Enforcement Division of DOR had been searching for Scrima for about six years.

The arrest comes weeks after District Attorney Sutter dedicated office resources to coordinate with law enforcement authorities in Nevada in order to apprehend Mr. Scrima.

Sutter praised the authorities in Nevada for their diligence and their regular communication with Bristol County Assistant District Attorney James McKenna, who was the point-man for the investigation. McKenna will prosecute the case for the Commonwealth upon Scrima's return to Massachusetts.

"This individual is on the state's top-10 most wanted list of 'dead beat dads.' And even though it is an expensive endeavor because he was living on the other side of the country, it was essential for us to track him down and bring him back to Massachusetts to face these charges," Sutter said. "It's an unacceptable act to abandon children. We will continue to build partnerships with state agencies like the Department of Revenue to better serve the people of Bristol County and Massachusetts."

After divorcing his wife in 1994, Scrima was ordered to pay $200 per month in child support. His last payment of support, according to DOR records, was for $115 in August, 2001.

"This is the fifth person apprehended our most recent Ten Most Wanted poster," LeBovidge said. "We hope this arrest will remind other parents of the serious consequences that result from failure to pay child support."

Since the Ten Most Wanted poster campaign began in April 1992, DOR has collected about $3.6 million in back child support from the non-custodial parents featured on the 13 posters. Scrima is the 97 th of the 113 alleged scofflaws pictured on the posters to be apprehended. The Child Support Enforcement division of DOR collected $516.3 million in fiscal 2006, a 4 percent increase over fiscal 2005.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of any of the Ten Most Wanted delinquent parents or others who are not paying their court-ordered child support should call the toll-free tip line at 1-888-926-8337. The poster may be viewed at www.mass.gov/cse.

Contacts:
Gregg Miliote
Director of Communications
Bristol County District Attorney's Office
508-961-1835
774-292-9576-after hours

Robert Bliss
Director of Communications
Massachusetts Department of Revenue
617-626-2369 or
617-803-4299