Brooklyn Man Charged with $130K Workers’ Comp Fraud

September 8, 2008

A 60-year-old Brooklyn man who maintained that a workplace injury left him unable to stand, walk or drive has been arrested on charges that he fraudulently claimed $130,000 in lost wage benefits and medical expenses.

Lev Gurariy was arrested Aug. 27 by the New York State Insurance Department’s Frauds Bureau. He was arraigned on charges of insurance fraud, falsifying business records and workers’ compensation fraud.

Authorities say Gurariy started receiving workers’ compensation benefits after claiming that he suffered neck and back injuries in 2003 while employed as a machine operator by Carts Food Equipment Corp., of Brooklyn. He claimed the injuries occurred while handling a sheet of stainless steel with a co-worker.

First Cardinal Insurance, of Albany, the workers’ compensation insurance carrier for Gurariy’s former employer, asked the Insurance Department to look into the case after it became suspicious of medical expenses Gurariy claimed.

Gurariy faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

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