A Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) bus driver has pleaded guilty to workers’ compensation insurance fraud after an investigation by the California Department of Insurance (CDI) Fraud Division.
Renee Terri Henderson, 40, of Marina Del Rey, was found to have submitted fraudulent claims during the investigation. She entered her plea on October 21 and now faces a sentence of 90 days in jail, three years probation and she must pay restitution of $15,245. Her formal sentencing is set for November 21.
“Intentionally misrepresenting your employment status while collecting workers’ compensation benefits is among the worst kind of fraud,” said Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. “Cheating the workers’ compensation system hurts other injured workers and employers. As you see in this case, when you are caught, I will do everything I can to see that you serve jail time for committing this fraud.”
According to CDI investigators, Henderson filed several workers’ compensation claims with the MTA when she was employed as a bus operator. As a result of claims she filed on March 21 and March 22, 2003, Henderson received Total Temporary Disability (TTD) benefits from March 22, 2003 to Dec. 22, 2003, collecting $386.65 every week.
A criminal complaint was issued by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office on Sept. 27, 2005, and the CDI investigation ensued, revealing that beginning approximately December 2000, Henderson was also employed with ING/Financial Network as a part-time clerk and in June 2003, she became a full time employee. Henderson denied working for any other employer other than MTA.
CDI Fraud Investigators obtained an arrest warrant from the Los Angeles Superior Court and arrested Henderson on October 12 on eight counts of insurance fraud. Henderson was arraigned on Oct. 13, 2005 and was charged with three counts of 1871.4(a)(1) Insurance Code; workers’ compensation misrepresentation, three counts of 550(b)(3) Penal Code; fraudulent claims, and two counts of 664-118(a) Penal Code; attempted perjury leading to the arrest warrant. Bail was set at $130,000.
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