CFO Alex Sink photo

Volume 4 Number 8
February 23, 2007

MARION COUNTY MAN ARRESTED ON CHARGES OF WORKERS’ COMPENSATION FRAUD, FALSE AND MISLEADING STATEMENTS

Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink announced the arrest of a Marion County man on charges of workers’ compensation fraud and providing false and misleading statements.  From July 28, 2005, until his arrest earlier this week, Marshall Lake, 59, allegedly represented his condition as being worse than it was and received nearly $22,000 worth of medical treatment and medication.

Lake, of Summerfield, was booked into the Marion County Jail on a $10,000 bond.  The charges against him will be prosecuted in Marion County by the State Attorney’s Office, Fifth Judicial Circuit of Florida.  The arrest stems from an investigation by the Department of Financial Services, Division of Insurance Fraud.  The case agent was Detective Kurt Harmon.   If convicted on the charges, Lake faces up to 10 years in prison, in addition to fines and restitution.

 “At a time when many Floridians are struggling to pay premiums, this man was exploiting the system – at the expense of taxpayers,” said CFO Sink who oversees the department.  “This office is committed to protecting Floridians and their pocket books from these types of crimes.”

While Lake was being provided medical treatment for low-back pain from a 1984 workers' compensation injury, the claims adjuster requested surveillance of Lake to document his daily activities and verify that medical treatment was medically necessary and causally related to the original industrial accident.  The surveillance captured Lake using a cane and back brace on the visits to his doctor, but on occasions immediately before and after these visits he did not use the devices.   Other surveillance not associated with doctor visits revealed Lake was active and moving freely without these assistive devices. 

Lake allegedly continued to provide misleading information during his deposition and this testimony was contradicted by the video surveillance.   Lake’s treating workers' compensation physician viewed the surveillance and concluded he was providing false information regarding his physical abilities.  

The Department of Financial Services, Division of Insurance Fraud, investigates various forms of fraud in insurance, including health, life, auto, property and workers' compensation insurance.  Anyone with information about this case or any other suspected fraud is asked to call the department's Fraud Fighters Hotline at 1-800-378-0445.  A reward of up to $25,000 may be offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction.