Former NYPD cops busted for $1.4M disability fraud
one of the accused Gerard Scparta with wife. (Jonathan Smith/ JLS Photo)
Three former New York City cops were busted Wednesday and charged with ripping off the federal government with $1.4 million in false disability claims.
One of the ex-cops, Gerard Scparta, 53, stands accused of stealing $638,000 from the Social Security Administration over two decades with fake claims that he suffered from depression and anxiety.
In reality, he was earning big bucks — as much as $1.6 million between 2004 and last year — as a security guard and host at an unnamed strip club, the feds said.
Scparta, of Campbell Hall, NY, was allegedly helped by a co-worker, who is now cooperating, and crooked lawyer, who has also pleaded guilty.
His case stems from a New York state case that nabbed more than 100 retired NYPD officers and firefighters who raked in millions with the help of disability consultant Thomas Hale.
“We look forward to our day in court,” said Scparta’s lawyer, Joseph Mure.
Separately, the feds busted Kenneth Rubero, 53, of White Plains, NY, and Scott Maraio, 53, of Staten Island, saying they, too, defrauded the SSA.
Rubero, a former NYPD detective, earned $396,000 in disability benefits for himself and his child while at the same earning over approximately $720,000 from his work with two companies he owns, including Baychester Payment Center, a check cashing business, the feds said.
Maraio, who is former NYPD and FDNY, earned over $364,000 in disability benefits for himself, his wife, and his children starting in 2008 — while also earning $450,000 working at a strip club and staffing company, the feds said.
“He didn’t do anything wrong,” said Rubero’s lawyer, Timothy Parlatore. “You’re allowed to invest in a business and oversee that business and that’s what he did.”