CONSUMER SERVICES HELPLINE
CFO SINK UNCOVERS
FRAUDULENT CHECK-CASHING SCHEME; DELIVERS $325,000 IN
Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink
announced that an investigation by the Department of
Financial Services’ (DFS) Division of Insurance Fraud, has
led to more than 110 criminal charges against Christiano
Leonardo Gloria, the operator of one of the largest
check-cashing operations in Broward County, for allegedly
conspiring in a major money-laundering and workers’
compensation fraud scheme. Attorney General Bill McCollum’s
Office of Statewide Prosecution will be prosecuting the
DFS investigators arrested Gloria on Friday on racketeering
charges stemming from his alleged support of a workers’
compensation premium fraud in the construction industry
through Vionaldo Express, Inc., a money transmitter business
that he operated. So far, the investigation has led to
$325,000 in restitution.
“Unfortunately, there are check cashing operations that are
helping companies avoid providing workers’ compensation
coverage for their employees,” said CFO Sink, who oversees
DFS and the state’s Division of Workers’ Compensation. “Our
top priority is protecting Florida’s citizens, and we will
hold employers and those who help them accountable if they
violate the laws that protect injured workers.”
Gloria is being held in the Broward County Jail without
bond. The charges will be prosecuted by the Office of
DFS Lead Investigator Detective Geoffrey Branch found that
individuals set up shell construction companies and lied on
insurance applications, primarily to Florida Citrus Business
and Industries Fund (FCBI), to obtain workers’ compensation
certificates of insurance. One of those shell companies, WM
South Florida Construction, defrauded the FCBI in excess of
$500,000 in premiums over a four-year period, and failed to
remit taxes on a payroll of approximately $27 million. The
payroll money was laundered through money transmitters in
South Florida, including Vionaldo Express, from September
2002 through March 2007.
Gloria allegedly completed fraudulent currency transaction
reports at Vionaldo Express, and submitted them to the IRS,
stating that the person receiving cash from the shell
companies’ checks was Dero William Viera in Brazil. Gloria
held aside a percentage for cashing the checks, and also set
aside a percentage of seven to 10 percent of each check as
‘rent’ to be distributed to Viera and other co-defendants.
The scheme allegedly provided contractors with certificates
of insurance reflecting that dozens of subcontractors and
hundreds of employees, oftentimes undocumented workers, were
covered by workers’ compensation insurance when in reality
none of these subcontractors or employees were affiliated
with the shell companies. Investigators determined they were
simply utilizing the shell company’s paperwork for a fee.
The following co-defendants have been convicted:
- Marcelo F. Delima (Pompano Beach) WM South Florida
Construction, Inc. – Ordered to pay $189,972.88 and has paid
$25,000 to date.
- Geovani M. Oliveira (Coconut Creek) WM South Florida
Construction, Inc. – Expected to be ordered to pay
$166,272.63 upon sentencing.
- Marcio E. Silva (Boca Raton) WM South Florida
Construction, Inc., ALD Construction, CRF Construction –
Ordered to pay $107,607.37 and has paid $25,000 to date.
- Sergio Dondisch (Surfside) Hialeah First, LLC DBA Liquid
Cash – Ordered to pay $275,000 and has paid in full.
Delima, Oliveira and Silva were convicted of Racketeering,
Conspiracy to Commit Racketeering, Worker’s Compensation
Fraud, Grand Theft, and Money Laundering. Gloria, who has
not been convicted, is facing those same charges as well as
Filing False Currency Transaction Reports. Dondisch was
convicted of Filing False Currency Transaction Reports.
Dero William Viera remains a fugitive and is criminally
liable for workers’ compensations premiums owed to FCBI, as
well as thousands of dollars in fraudulent claims paid by
FCBI. Additionally, the state will seek to have the fugitive
forfeit in excess of $500,000, which is the minimal profit
obtained from the criminal enterprise.
DFS was assisted during the course of the investigation in
execution of search and arrest warrants by Broward and Palm
Beach Counties’ Sheriffs Office’s, Miami-Dade Police
Department, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and
the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and
DFS investigates various forms of fraud in insurance,
including health, life, auto, property and workers'
compensation insurance. Depending on the estimated loss
amount, the department will pay up to $25,000 for
information directly leading to an arrest and conviction.
Anyone with information about this or any other suspected
insurance fraud is asked to call the department’s Fraud
Fighters Hotline at 1-800-378-0445 or log on to