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Glens Falls official convicted in fraud case

Glens Falls official convicted in fraud case

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A federal jury late Tuesday convicted a member of the Glens Falls Board of Public Safety of four federal charges for making false statements in a worker's compensation case.

William J. Casey of Cooper Street, Glens Falls, was acquitted of three charges but found guilty of four felony counts of "making false or fraudulent statements in order to obtain federal employee's compensation" following a seven-day trial in U.S. District Court.

The case was brought in connection with a back injury Casey suffered while working at the U.S. Post Office in Glens Falls, and the worker's compensation benefits he was receiving. He is no longer employed by the Postal Service.

The charges alleged he "failed to indicate that his medical condition had improved" and that he "may have been improperly attempting to influence how his physician completed required paperwork related to his worker's compensation claim," according to court records.

The evidence against him included videotapes made by federal investigators of Casey involved in physical activity, court records show.

When confronted with the videotaped evidence, Casey told postal service officials his "medical restrictions at work do not apply to his off-duty hours," Sal Giarrizzo, an investigator with the Office of the Inspector General, wrote in court records.

"This conviction should serve as a warning to all those who are thinking about committing workers' compensation fraud," Jane Hughes, special agent-in-charge of the Inspector General's Northeast area field office, said in a news release.

The assistant U.S. attorney who prosecuted the case, Richard Belliss, could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

Casey took a leave of absence from his positions on the Board of Public Safety and Glens Falls Zoning Board after The Post-Star reported on his indictment in the case. That indictment happened weeks earlier, but he did not tell city officials about it or seek a leave of absence until the day a reporter learned about it.

Michael Mender, assistant to Glens Falls Mayor John "Jack" Diamond, said Tuesday he was not aware of the conviction, and that Casey's status with the city board had not changed.

Mender said he believed the convictions would spell the end of Casey's tenure on the boards.

Neither Casey nor his lawyer, federal assistant public defender George Baird, returned phone calls for comment Wednesday.

Casey is free pending sentencing. Prosecutors did not say whether sentencing has been scheduled, but they indicated that the charges could bring a sentence of up to 5 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

 

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