Tuesday, June 17, 2008

New York Employer Charged With Comp Fraud

Eagle River Inc., a Colonie-based trucking company, has been charged with underreporting its payroll by $2.2 million, costing the New York State Insurance Fund $300,981 in lost workers’ compensation premiums.

The corporation was arraigned on charges of falsifying business records and committing a fraudulent practice. The charges were lodged in Town of Colonie Court by Philip D’Angelo, an investigator with the Frauds Bureau of the New York State Insurance Department.

According to the charges, Eagle River falsified its payroll between November 2003 and November 2006 by underreporting wages, one of the factors used in determining workers’ comp premiums.

Authorities said the underreporting was discovered in an audit of the corporation’s payroll conducted as part of a joint investigation by the Insurance Department’s Frauds Bureau and the State Insurance Fund.

Eagle River employs approximately 35 drivers and transports mail for the U.S. Postal Service.

The company was represented at the arraignment by its president, Alfred Blackburn Jr., 31, and attorney Gregory Marsh. Following the arraignment, the case was referred to Albany County Court where a hearing will be scheduled. The charges were placed against the corporation itself and no charges were filed against individuals.

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