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Small business owner in New York accused of workers comp fraud

A New York State pizzeria owner is in hot water with the New York State Insurance Fund over accusations of NY workers’ comp fraud.  The small business, Nando’s Restaurant, is located in Johnson City.


Owner Claudio Carpentieri, 50, was arrested by Johnson City police on charges of workers’ compensation fraud and on charges of offering a false instrument for filing.  Carpentieri ended up in trouble after he allegedly paid three of his employees “off the books” to avoid paying for their workers’ comp insurance.


Carpentieri actually submitted paperwork to the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board claiming that he did not have any employees, and therefore did not owe any money for workers’ comp insurance premiums.


Unfortunately for Carpentieri, New York is cracking down on workers’ comp insurance fraud.  Investigators from the Frauds Bureau and the Office of the Fraud Inspector General did a little detective work and discovered that Carpentieri actually employed two people inside Nando’s Restaurant and one delivery driver.


The owner’s defense was that the “employees” were actually his children, not “real” employees.  Carpentieri faces a hearing for the charges against him on September 1, 2010.  If he is found guilty, he could spend as much as four years behind bars.