Youngstown, Ohio, Man Pleads Guilty to Comp Fraud

A Youngstown, Ohio, area man recently pleaded guilty to one felonious count of workers' compensation fraud after an Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation investigation found that he was delivering newspapers while collecting disability benefits.

John Dominick of Lowellville, Ohio, was ordered to pay $30,701.99 in restitution and placed under community control for 5 years for his crime. If Dominick violates the terms of his community control or fails to make monthly restitution payments, he will serve 8 months in jail.

"We must defend equity and fairness within Ohio's workers' compensation system by bringing justice to those who have criminal intentions," Ohio BWC Administrator/CEO Bill Mabe said. "Stopping fraud is a cornerstone of our efforts to ensure employers' and injured workers' interests are protected."

In December 2002, the Youngstown special investigations unit received an allegation that Dominick was allegedly working while collecting benefits. The agency confirmed that Dominick was working as a newspaper carrier while collecting temporary total disability benefits from Ohio BWC.

Injured workers who receive temporary disability benefits are temporarily disabled due to an occupational injury. The benefits are terminated when the injured worker is physically able to return to work.

The agency's findings indicate Dominick had been working while receiving disability benefits from June 2001 through June 2003. Additionally, the Special Investigations Unit found that additional allowances within the claim for injuries sustained to his right ankle may have resulted from his work as a newspaper carrier and may not have been related to his original injury.

Dominick originally sustained head, back and neck injuries in June 2001 while working as a technician for Cerni Motor Sales.

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