Some Fraudsters Never Learn


There are people who make mistakes, but learn from them. Then there are fraudsters, who sometimes repeatedly commit the same illegal acts, but never learn that they will eventually be caught and prosecuted…again and again.

One repeat offender from Rhode Island didn’t learn from her mistakes the first time around when committing unemployment fraud as a state Department of Labor and Training (RIDLT) employee. Further research revealed that the former benefits claim specialist first committed unemployment fraud by using her computer and the computers of her colleagues to approve unemployment benefits worth more than $25,000 for her husband and for a co-conspirator who did not deserve them. After a co-worker detected the fraud and contacted the Rhode Island police, the woman was punished with one year of home confinement, nine years of probation and ordered to pay restitution.

The convicted fraudster then attempted the same scheme again within two years of the previous offense. (Her punishment must not have been harsh enough the first time around.) While working for another company in Massachusetts, the woman applied to receive unemployment benefits from the state of Rhode Island, but failed to report her weekly earnings amounting to approximately $2,000 via the RIDLT online system. (Perhaps she was trying to get back at the agency for letting her go even though she did commit a crime. Unfortunately for her, the plan backfired.)

Prosecutors didn’t have to make a case against the 46-year-old fraudster the second time around. She pleaded ”no contest” to the charges of unemployment insurance fraud and was ordered to serve nine months in prison with eight years of suspended probation and will pay back $2,090 in restitution. (Perhaps the added punishment of prison time as a consequence of her second brush with the law will teach this fraudster a lesson that she will not soon forget.)

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled, ”Woonsocket woman pleads ‘no contest’ to unemployment insurance fraud for 2nd time,” posted on on September 2, 2016.

The Rhode Island Attorney General’s office announced a Woonsocket woman has pleaded no contest to charges of unemployment insurance fraud. This is her second charged offense in two years.

The state was prepared to make the case that Ruth Rosa-Rios, 46, failed to disclose her employment and wages on an online unemployment insurance from the Rhode Department of Labor and Training.

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.