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Coalition Against Insurance Fraud

Florida builder allegedly has employees cash paychecks

November 08, 2019, Boynton Beach, FL — The dodge using a Boynton Beach market saved a construction company owner more than $100,000 in insurance premiums, the state alleges. He’s facing fraud charges.

The owner of a Broward County construction company skirted workers’ compensation insurance fees for at least a year by having his employees cash nearly $1 million in checks at a Boynton Beach convenience store, state officials allege.

Sony Lundy is charged with two similar scams in Broward County, records show.

Lundy, who turns 50 this month, was booked Monday at the Palm Beach County Jail on charges of fraud of more than $100,000 and of organized scheme to defraud, according to jail records and a report by the Florida Department of Financial Services.

Palm Beach Gardens police said Friday they stopped Lundy for a traffic violation and a check revealed the warrant.

Jail records show Lundy left the jail Tuesday on $45,000 bond. Lundy, reached Thursday, referred a reporter to Glenn Roderman, his lawyer in the Broward cases. Roderman did not return calls Thursday or Friday.

According to an affidavit by the state’s Workers’ Compensation Fraud Bureau, Lundy founded Paloma Construction Group in April 2018, using his home address in Sunrise as its corporate address. Paloma specialized in masonry work.

In June 2018, the affidavit says, Lundy bought a workers’ compensation policy from an insurance agency in Stuart. The policy was based on an annual payroll of $78,000 and called for an annual premium of $10,335.

The state determined that from then until June 2019, Lundy and his company cashed $911,006 in payroll checks at the Rainbow City Food Store in Boynton Beach, on Seacrest Boulevard next to Ezell Hester Park. A contractor told the state he paid Paloma $891,866 for work during that time.

Lundy’s insurer told the state that, had Lundy reported the income related to the cashed checks, he would have had to pay an additional $119,777 in premiums. An audit later also showed the company’s payroll totaled $147,849, double what Lundy originally had declared.

The case will be prosecuted in Martin County because the insurer is in Stuart, the state affidavit said.

The state said also said it had gathered evidence Lundy similarly scammed two other insurance companies. Broward court records show two felony cases against Lundy were filed in February 2019. Both are open.

Source: The Palm Beach Post

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