R.I. Man Indicted in Workers’ Comp Case

March 30, 2004

A Rhode Island man has been indicted on charges he allegedly worked as a used car broker while claiming to be injured and collecting $160,000 in total disability benefits, Attorney General Tom Reilly announced.

Thomas Fratantuono, Sr., 54, of Foster, R.I., was indicted by a Suffolk County grand jury on one count each of workers’ compensation insurance fraud and insurance fraud, and two counts of larceny over $250. He is scheduled to be arraigned April 14 in Suffolk Superior Court.

Fratantuono, who was a self-employed auto broker, suffered head injuries in a June 1999 automobile accident and as a result reported that he suffered from cognitive difficulties, hearing loss, and balance problems which prevented him from working after November 2000.

From November 2000 through August 2003, Fratantuono allegedly collected $699 per week in total disability workers’ comp benefits, those reserved for someone incapable of working in any capacity for an employer, from Granite State Insurance, a unit of American International Group (AIG). In addition, Fratantuono allegedly collected $2,000 per month in total disability benefits under a private disability insurance policy he had with Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company.

The investigation found that in 2001 and 2002, Fratantuono allegedly worked as a used car broker for a Fitchburg used car dealer while collecting the total disability payments from Granite State Insurance and Penn Mutual Life Insurance.

By concealing his post-injury employment, Fratantuono allegedly fraudulently collected more than $85,000 from Granite State Insurance and $76,000 from Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company.

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