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BOSTON POLICE OFFICER PLEADS GUILTY IN INJURY SCAM

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 2011

BOSTON, Mass. - A Boston police officer was convicted today in federal court of a fraud scheme involving his work-related disability claim.

ELIEZER GONZALEZ, 49, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Richard G. Stearns to 34 counts of mail fraud. He will be sentenced on June 3, 2011. GONZALEZ faces up to 20 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine on each count of mail fraud.

Had the case proceeded to trial the Government’s evidence would have proven that the City of Boston and a private supplemental insurer were defrauded by GONZALEZ who went out on injured leave after allegedly suffering on-the-job injuries in September 2007. He immediately began receiving tax-free injured pay and also filed for accidental disability retirement.

GONZALEZ greatly exaggerated and falsified both his injuries and ongoing physical issues and fraudulently collected both injured leave pay from the City of Boston totaling approximately $173,000 as well as supplemental insurance benefits totaling $3,600. He was surveilled and videotaped feigning injuries on or near the same days that he was recorded acting injury-free, including walking with a cane to his doctor’s appointments and then walking unassisted while running errands. During the time that GONZALEZ was collecting injured pay, he frequented the L Street Bath House, went salsa dancing, and traveled abroad without difficulty.

U.S. Attorney Ortiz, Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division, Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugenia M. Carris and Diane C. Freniere of the U.S. Attorney’s Public Corruption Unit.

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