U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island
May 24, 2011
FORMER ON-AIR RADIO PERSONALITY TO PLEAD GUILTY
IN FEDERAL COURT IN INSURANCE FRAUD SCHEME
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A former on-air Providence radio personality, charged in an alleged insurance fraud scheme with three others, has agreed to plead guilty as charged in a five-count federal indictment, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston Field Office. The indictment arose as an outgrowth of an FBI investigation into political corruption in North Providence. A Plea Agreement in this matter was filed in U.S. District Court on Monday.
Lori A. Sergiacomi, 49, of North Providence, a/k/a Tanya Cruise, was indicted by a federal grand jury in November 2010 on one count of conspiracy and four counts of mail fraud. The indictment alleges that Sergiacomi and three others conspired to devise a scheme in which an insurance claim would be filed to repair uninsured flood damage to Sergiacomi’s home which was caused by the historic floods in March 2010. The indictment alleges that they intentionally caused damage to the roof and interior of Sergiacomi’s home and in-ground swimming pool, and then attributed the damages and previous flood damage to a fictitious wind and rain storm in April 2010. Sergiacomi’s insurance claim for nearly $50,000 also included money to be used for home improvement projects.
In addition to Sergiacomi, the indictment also charged former North Providence Town Councilman John A. Zambarano, 48, a residential contractor and owner of Zam’s Carpeting, Inc.; Robert A. Ricci, 49, of North Providence, a former hearing officer for the Rhode Island Contractor’s Registration and Licensing Board, and a residential contractor and owner of R.A.R. Building and Home Improvements LLC; and Vincent O. DiPaolo, 61, of Johnston, an unlicensed public insurance adjuster and owner of VDP United Consultants, Inc with four counts of mail fraud and one count of conspiracy.
John Zambarano, who previously pleaded guilty to political corruption and insurance fraud charges, was sentenced in U.S. District Court last week by U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mary M. Lisi to 71 months in federal prison; Robert Ricci has signed a plea agreement and is scheduled to enter a change-of plea to guilty on June 1, 2011; and Vincent DiPaolo is awaiting trial.
An indictment is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The matter is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Terrence P. Donnelly and John P. McAdams.