Press Release – Accident Compensation Corporation
A ‘tip-off’ to ACC’s freephone fraud reporting line led to the conviction of Paraparaumu man Simon John Kruidenier in the Porirua District Court recently for defrauding ACC.9 February 2012
Home detention for Paraparaumu man who kept working while claiming ACC
A ‘tip-off’ to ACC’s freephone fraud reporting line led to the conviction of Paraparaumu man Simon John Kruidenier in the Porirua District Court recently for defrauding ACC.
The 58-year-old, who claimed seven years’ worth of weekly compensation payments while he continued to work, appeared in Court on 24 January 2012.
Mr Kruidenier pleaded guilty to a representative charge under Section 228 of the Crimes Act 1961. He was sentenced by Judge Walker to eight months’ home detention, plus 100 hours’ community work.
Mr Kruidenier began receiving weekly compensation in September 2005. This was paid on the basis that Mr Kruidenier was unfit to work as the result of occupational neurotoxicity, sustained in his previous employment as a printer’s assistant.
The weekly compensation payments were backdated to 1998, but what Mr Kruidenier omitted to tell ACC was that he’d actually resumed employment in 2002.
He continued to work and claim weekly compensation until October 2009, receiving a total of $85,878.99 net to which he wasn’t entitled.
Throughout the period during which he received weekly compensation, Mr Kruidenier declared neither his employment status nor his earnings to ACC, despite signing numerous declarations stating he was aware he must tell ACC of any change in his circumstances that may affect his entitlement.
ACC’s General Manager of Claims Management, Denise Cosgrove, says this is an example of deliberate and long-term deception, conducted for the offender’s own financial gain.
“What makes this so disappointing is that ACC collects levies to help people with genuine injury-related needs. Mr Kruidenier’s offending therefore amounts to theft from honest, hard-working New Zealanders.”
A pleasing aspect of the conviction, says Ms Cosgrove, is that it proves people can’t expect to get away with fraud against ACC.
“We have a dedicated Investigations Unit, which follows up all tip-offs received about possible fraud. The unit is committed to bringing to justice anyone who’s found to have defrauded ACC.”