Bourne Man Charged with over $18K in Unemployment Fraud

BOURNE – A Bourne man faces charges for collecting thousands in unemployment benefits while working full time for a series of car dealerships.  

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced on Friday that 51-year-old Louis Zannella, of Bourne, collected $18,000 in unemployment benefits while allegedly continuing to work.

Zannella was charged on Thursday with two counts of Unemployment Fraud, two counts of Uttering Insufficient Funds to the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA), and one count of Larceny Over $250. He will be arraigned on February 26 in Suffolk Superior Court.

The AG’s Office alleges that from October 2016 through May 2017, Zannella was working full time at a series of auto dealerships while also collecting unemployment benefits. In total, the AG’s Office alleges that Zannella fraudulently collected $18,730 in unemployment benefits.

Investigators further allege that in instances when the DUA determined it had made an overpayment to Zannella, he would repeatedly make online payments to the agency from fictitious accounts in order to exploit a “grace period” for payment and still collect benefits.

These charges are the result of an investigation referred to the Attorney General’s Office by the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development’s Department of Unemployment Assistance (EOLWD\DUA).

AG Healey’s Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Unit works to protect consumers and the integrity of the insurance system by investigating and prosecuting those who commit fraud against all types of insurers, including the Commonwealth’s unemployment insurance and workers’ compensation systems.

These cases are being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Joshua Pakstis and Senior Investigator Phil Mantyla, all of AG Healey’s Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Unit, with assistance investigators at EOLWD\DUA.

To report unemployment fraud call the EOLWD/DUA’s Fraud Hotline @ 1-800-354-9927 or visit: Callers may remain anonymous.

By TIM DUNN, News Center 

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