A Victorian worker who lodged a fraudulent claim with WorkSafe Victoria while still receiving weekly benefit payments for a wrist injury sustained in 2018 at his previous job has been ordered to return more than $35,000 to the scheme.
WorkSafe says in a statement today Ian Riseley, 64, was found guilty at the La Trobe Valley Magistrates’ Court last week of fraudulently obtaining compensation payments.
He was fined $1500 and ordered to pay costs of $1971. He was also sentenced to a Community Corrections Order for 18 months.
WorkSafe launched an investigation after he submitted in September 2019 a second workers’ compensation claim for an injury he purportedly suffered at his new workplace, a beef cattle processing facility. He began working there in February the same year and in his application claimed he had never suffered a work-related injury.
When he filed the second claim, he was still getting payments for the wrist injury he suffered while employed at a trailer manufacturing business that caused him to stop working, and this prompted WorkSafe insurer CGU to contact Riseley.
He denied secretly working and insisted the new claim was a case of identity theft but WorkSafe investigations showed he was working as a stockist at the beef cattle business while still taking benefit payments for his previous injury.
WorkSafe’s Insurance Business Unit Executive Director Roger Arnold says WorkSafe is always on the lookout for fraudulent behaviour.
“In this case, the offender was undone by his own greed, but even those who think they’re smart enough to game the workers’ compensation system will be caught and face serious consequences,” Mr Arnold said.
“The scheme is there to support injured workers and help them return to work, and WorkSafe won’t hesitate to prosecute those who try to exploit it for personal gain.”
Source: Insurance news.com.au