Cookie Jar

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Today’s fraudster from Berea, Ohio is a cook who got caught with his hand in the cookie jar. That may not sound out of sorts for the man’s profession; however, the cookie jar in this case belonged to the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC). (The Ohio cook had quite the appetite when it came to collecting workers’ compensation benefits he did not deserve.) Because his eyes were bigger than his stomach, he has recently been convicted of workers’ compensation fraud.

The man in today’s fraud case was reportedly receiving workers’ compensation benefits due to an industrial accident. He claimed that he had a back injury that prevented him from working. The BWC approved his claim of temporary total disability which put him on the list to receive workers’ compensation benefits. (Apparently, his back was not injured enough to keep him from working as a cook and standing on his feet for hours at a time.)

The Ohio man’s half-baked workers’ compensation scheme started off simmering at a local tavern in Valley View where he was a short order cook. He tried to keep his visibility low, but someone called in a tip to the BWC. (Maybe a tavern customer didn’t like the bar food and thought he’d complain.)

Undercover investigators followed the suspected fraudster to the tavern, where they observed him letting himself in the front door of the establishment. (The BWC agents visited the tavern as customers and recorded video of the cook.) It didn’t take long for the investigators to realize that the cook’s back injury did not interfere with his ability to work.

When investigators confronted the cook with the evidence of his crime, proving he was working a regular schedule while also receiving workers’ compensation benefits, he initially denied involvement. Once he was shown the video, he changed his mind. He apparently never considered that modern technological advancements such as video could help to incriminate him. (Nor the fact that the GPS monitor he was wearing revealed his location.)

The 58-year-old man from Berea, Ohio pleaded guilty to workers’ compensation fraud and was ordered to repay the $46,000 he stole from the BWC. (Congratulations to the BWC for causing this man’s fraudulent scheme to fall  like a bad souffle.)

Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled, “Cook caught working while receiving worker’s compensation, ordered to repay $46,000,” posted on Fox8.com on August 29, 2018.

VALLEY VIEW, Ohio — An undercover investigation catches a Cleveland cook with his hand in the cookie jar, and now the double dipping cook is now being forced to give back a lot of “bread.”

58-year-old Walter Patterson of Berea was reportedly breaking the law just by working at a tavern in Valley View.

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Larry Benson
Larry Benson is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances for Revenue Discovery and Recovery at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. In this role, Benson is responsible for developing partnerships for the tax and revenue and child support enforcement verticals. He focuses on embedded companies that have a need for third-party analytics to enhance their current offerings.