Social Security Fraud Bust Nails Hundreds of Former NYPD, NYFD Officers

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

More than 100 retired police officers, firefighters and others have been charged by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance in what is likely one of the biggest Social Security fraud cases on record.

Though many of the alleged fraudulent claims were filed in the years immediately following the September 11th attacks, prosecutors say the scheme stretches back 26 years. It centers on a four men: a former prosecutor, a former police officer, a union official and a disability consultant.

Together, these four are accused of coaching as many as 1,000 uniformed officers in how to receive benefits. Prosecutors say they stole as much as $400 million dollars.

The evidence includes a screenshot taken from a Facebook page allegedly showing a man who had been collecting benefits for years, standing on a boat, proudly clutching what appears to be a huge swordfish.

In this interview, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said the scheme is "doubly disturbing" because the money is reserved for 9/11 victims.

"There are those individuals who suffered true trauma as a result of running to the fires on September 11th, and this safety net is really reserved for those people like them, individuals who ... truly and really cannot provide for their families," he said.

Produced by:

Richard Yeh


More in:

Comments [3]

Average NYer from Woodside

Does this surprise anybody about NY Finest and Bravest. The firemen in NYC have a pension plan like no other Americans. The sense of entitlement to the publics money is outrageous and abused. I have played golf on NYC golf courses with fireman who are out on disability. I personally experienced the theft of computers and an entire gym full of equipment from the World Financial Center buildings directly across from ground zero which were partially damaged after 9/11. Workers on the clean up of the building a week after the the damage to the buildings informed me that NYC cops pulled up a truck to the building at night and told the workers, the cops were taking the gym equipment. The equipment belonged to the corporation I was employed by. Many fireman work 3 days straight (72 hours) and then are off for 4 days. Many hold second jobs and own businesses that they operate during the 4 days off. It is my understanding that the straight 72 hour shift is against Fire Dept. policy, but it is tolerated and part of Fire Department culture of entitlement. The padding of overtime during the last three career years by fireman and cops to enhance the already very generous pensions seems to go unchecked by the Heads of the Fire and Police Departments, not to mention the City elected officials. Hey, it's NY, everyone is on the take. Yes, their jobs are dangerous and the early and generous pension plans recognize this. This does not justify stealing from the public.

Jan. 08 2014 04:22 PM
Iced-Tee from Hollywood, CA

God, they're such heroes! NY's Finest! (Sniffle, sniffle)

Jan. 08 2014 02:19 PM
Leah from Bronx

The NYPD the new face of the Welfare queen?.. Hmm

Jan. 07 2014 10:15 PM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.


Latest Newscast




WNYC is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation: Because a great city needs an informed and engaged public


Supported by