Former Corrections Officer Sentenced For Stealing Disability Benefits

Trenton, NJ (CompNewsNetwork) - Attorney General Anne Milgram and Criminal Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni announced that a former Department of Corrections officer was sentenced today for fraudulently obtaining temporary disability benefits.

According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden Brown, Laura M. Mamaligas, 34, of Sayreville, who was employed as a New Jersey Department of Corrections officer from 2002 to 2006, was ordered by Superior Court Judge Charles A. Delehey in Mercer County to serve three years probation and to pay $12,512 in restitution. Mamaligas was also permanently barred from public employment. Mamaligas was sentenced pursuant to her Sept. 23 guilty plea to theft by deception. The charge was contained in a Feb. 14, 2008 Mercer County grand jury indictment.

In pleading guilty, Mamaligas admitted that between May 26 and Aug. 29, 2005, she illegally collected $6,059 in temporary disability benefits by falsely creating and reinforcing the impression that she was disabled and unable to work at the Department of Corrections. Mamaligas caused a false claim for workers' compensation temporary disability benefits and health care benefits to be submitted through the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Workers' Compensation. Mamaligas admitted that she was, in fact, not injured or disabled and was fully able to perform her duties. Mamaligas also admitted that she caused $6,452 to be paid to various health care providers for treating her purported injuries.

Detective Kristi Procaccino and Civil Investigator Bonnie Apone were assigned to the investigation. Deputy Attorney General Susan Kase represented the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor at the sentencing. Prosecutor Brown thanked the Department of Corrections, Special Investigation Division, for its great assistance in this investigation.

The Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor was established by the Automobile Insurance Cost Reduction Act of 1998. The office is the centralized state agency that investigates and prosecutes both civil and criminal insurance fraud, as well as Medicaid fraud.

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