Ex-NYPD cops cuffed for swiping $1M in disability grifts

New York Daily News – by Leonard Greene

They were part of the city’s Bravest and Finest, but prosecutors say two ex-cops and a former firefighter are now among the Sleaziest.

Three former NYPD officers — including one who also used to be a firefighter — were arrested Wednesday for separate schemes that netted them more than $1 million in bogus disability benefits, authorities said. 

“These three defendants, all former law enforcement officers, told lie after lie to obtain a total of over $1 million in disability benefits through fraud,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman said in a statement.

“In doing so, they allegedly took money from truly disabled individuals who are dependent on this important source of public support.”

Arrested were Gerard Scparta, a former NYPD officer, Scott Maraio, a NYPD officer and former city firefighter, and Kenneth Rubero, a former NYPD detective.

According to Berman, Scparta, Maraio and Rubero each falsely represented to the Social Security Administration that disabilities kept them from working, and they failed to report earnings from employment as required.

At the same time they were collecting disability benefits, each of them were working at various jobs, earning hundreds of thousands of dollars over several years.

Scparta, 53, who left the department in 1997 after claiming an injury left him unable to perform his duties, worked as a strip club security guard, earning nearly $1.6 million over 20 years. During the same time, he received about $638,000 in disability benefits.

Scparta, of Campbell Hall, N.Y., concealed the strip club income by funneling his paychecks to a third-party corporate entity owned by his wife, authorities said.

After a year with the NYPD, Maraio, 53, of Staten Island, joined the Fire Department, but claimed a disability in 2002 after 16 years. He began receiving benefits for what he said were neck and back injuries.

Maraio also did strip club security work as well as fire-safety consulting on construction sites — earning nearly $450,000 over a decade.

Officials said he supplemented that income with about $364,000 in disability benefits, and also concealed his earnings through a corporate entity owned by his wife.

Rubero, 53, of White Plains, was promoted to detective in 1991 after six years on the job, but claimed a disability in 1997, when he said problems with his knees, neck and back kept him from working with the NYPD.

Between 2008 and 2018, Rubero owned and operated a check-cashing business in the Bronx, and ran a security company from his home.

The two jobs, which he did not report, earned him more than $720,000 while he collected about $396,000 in disability benefits, authorities said.

They were each arrested at their homes.


2 thoughts on “Ex-NYPD cops cuffed for swiping $1M in disability grifts

  1. tip of the iceberg I’m sure ..
    there are more of these filthy animals getting away with similar crimes all over this country .. this is just a taste of how corrupt these bastards are

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