Mass. Businessman Charged with Filing False Claims, Stealing $40K

October 4, 2011

A Waltham, Mass., businessman who is alleged to have stolen nearly $10,000 with his insurance fraud and another $30,000 in a separate unemployment fraud scheme is scheduled to appear in court this week.

In mid-August, John Toyias, age 45, was charged with two counts of motor vehicle insurance fraud, 55 counts of unemployment fraud, two counts of larceny over $250, and attempted larceny. He entered a plea of not guilty and was released on personal recognizance. On Friday, Oct. 7, he is expected to appear at Suffolk Superior Court for his criminal case court hearing. The case is Commonwealth v John Toyias.

According to authorities, Toyias, who owns Waltham-based Jayco Landscaping Co., had filed fraudulent insurance claims five years ago for alleged property damage to a methane pipe owned by the town of Canton. Toyias’s company manages waste removal and dumping contracts for several cities and towns.

Allegedly Submitted False Repair Invoices

In May 2006, a driver allegedly backed over a methane pipe with their vehicle on a contracted site in Canton. Authorities said that although there was no visible damage, Toyias insisted that the driver report the incident and alleged damages to his insurer, Arbella Insurance Company. Toyias subsequently submitted invoices for emergency repairs made to the methane pipe to Arbella, without contacting the town of Canton. As a result of the claim, Toyias was paid $9,925 by the insurer.

Authorities also allege that in May 2007, Toyias’s company employee contacted Premier Insurance Company to report a similar incident in which he backed his vehicle into the same methane pipe claimed in 2006.

Toyias again claimed emergency repair work was completed on the methane pipe immediately following the accident and submitted repair invoices to Premier for $9,925. Subsequent investigation by Premier noted the previous claim made in 2006. Further investigation by an outside property damage appraiser at the site of the alleged incident found no evidence of any repairs made to the pipe. Premier ultimately denied the claim and referred the case to the Insurance Fraud Bureau of Massachusetts (IFB) for further investigation. Following its investigation, the IFB referred this matter to the Attorney General’s Office.

In a separate scheme, Toyias allegedly applied for unemployment benefits from the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development’s Division of Unemployment Assistance on two separate occasions while fraudulently claiming to be unemployed and began receiving benefits from January 2006 through July 2006, and from March 2007 through September 2007. During these time periods, Toyias allegedly continued to operate as the president and owner of his company, and failed to disclose his employment status. Authorities allege Toyias collected fraudulent benefits totaling $30,620.

Source: The Commonwealth of Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General

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