The fall of Gino Rives started when a U.S. Bank fraud investigator noticed unusual transactions from an 82-year-old bank client. The investigator noted 83 checks written from January 2021 to March 2023 for more than $1,100,000 payable to Gino Rives. The money was for reported home repairs, but seemed suspicious since Rives was not a licensed contractor and the woman’s residence was worth only $135,000. The investigator was wise to be suspicious. Because Rives prayed on the elderly who had no family members to protect them, claiming to be the handyman who would take care of it all. And all while he fleeced the elderly, he was also fleecing the Social Security Department for disability benefits.
Government subsidized fraud!
In his application for disability benefits, Rives claimed to have a mental health disorder which prevented him from working. In an interview with a Social Security Administration psychologist, it was noted that Rives appeared incapable of answering basic questions. He claimed to have difficulty concentrating, following instructions, completing tasks, and suffering memory loss. Issues that would get in the way of gainful employment. Application approved. Rives is supported by the U.S. taxpayer to steal from the elderly.
Rives claimed he had never been employed, could not drive, was unable to handle his financial affairs and had no assets. But that was furthest from the truth. Rives actually owned a construction and tree trimming company where he had earned more than $700,000. And he owned multiple houses and vehicles. All while Rives fraudulently received more than $91,000 in fraudulent disability benefits. A drop in the bucket considering what he stole from the elderly.
Sentencing for Rives begins on March 14, 2024.
Today’s Fraud of The Day is based on article “St. Louis County man admits to disability fraud” published by First Alert 4 on January 19, 2024
A man who previously admitted to financially exploiting two elderly women has now admitted to committing disability fraud. Gino Rives, 36, pleaded guilty to five counts of theft of government funds. He admitted to fraudulently applying for payments from the Social Security Administration’s Supplemental Security Income Program in 2010.
He claimed to have a mental health disorder and pretended to be incapable of answering basic questions. He reportedly falsely claimed to have difficulty concentrating, following instructions, completing tasks and with his memory. He also claimed he had never had a job, could not drive, was unable to handle his financial affairs and had no asset.