Mass. Man Sent to Jail for Workers’ Comp Fraud

March 26, 2004

A Hyannis, Massachusetts man has been found guilty and sentenced to jail for working as a laborer while collecting $7,000 in workers’ compensation benefits, Attorney General Tom Reilly announced.

Mark Gomes, 39, of Hyannis, was found guilty recently on one count of workers’ comp fraud at a bench trial in Boston Municipal Court. Judge Sally Kelly sentenced Gomes to serve six months in the Suffolk County House of Correction followed by probation for three years. Gomes was also ordered to pay $1,000 in fines.

Gomes claimed to have been involved in a steamroller accident in October 1997, allegedly injuring his neck, shoulder and back. The investigation found that in February 1998, Gomes failed to disclose pertinent medical history to a doctor who was examining him to determine his eligibility for workers’ comp benefits.

Subsequently, in April 1998, Gomes was reportedly captured on surveillance video performing manual labor at a construction site in Osterville. The video showed Gomes operating a jackhammer, driving a backhoe, bending into a ditch, installing sewer pipes, and lifting large metal plates and large pieces of asphalt.

Gomes submitted earnings reports to the insurer paying him workers’ comp benefits in which he claimed that he was not working and was not earning wages while he was receiving workers’ comp benefits.

In total, the investigation found that Gomes fraudulently received nearly $7,000 in benefits to which he was not entitled.

A restitution hearing has been scheduled for May 6 to determine the amount of money Gomes will have to pay back to the insurer.

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