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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Cop, a Former Councilman, Arrested for Health Care Fraud

Buffalo cop, former councilman arrested 
WIVB  by Luke Moretti -  May 9, 2012

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - US Attorney William Hochul, with members of the FBI and other officials at his side, announced the arrest of a Buffalo Police officer on Wednesday. Robert Quintana, 50, has been charged with mail and health care fraud. Authorities say the Buffalo Police officer and former councilman for the City of Buffalo has been on injured-on-duty status since March of 2005. Quintana allegedly hurt his lower back and buttocks slipping down some icy steps while responding to a 911 call. Hochul says Quintana was seen on 11 separate occasions working at a local neighborhood restaurant, The Niagara Cafe. Quintana was seen by authorities lifting supplies, cleaning tables, stocking, kneeling, bending and chopping ice. Nevertheless, in a January 2012 medical exam, Quintana told doctors he was unable to perform any work. Hochul stated, "By falsely claiming to be too injured to return to work, an officer not just breaks the law, she or he hurts the credibility of those legitimately injured in the line of duty. This type of lie also leaves one less officer to patrol the streets of the city, requires working officers to perform overtime duty and thereby increase their own risk of injury, and drives up the cost of health care in these times of difficult economic circumstances." The City of Buffalo has paid $561,000 in benefits and salary to Quintana since March of 2005 - all tax free. Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda said Quintana will be suspended without pay, immediately. If convicted of the fraud charges, Quintana could face a maximum sentence of 20 years behind bars, a $250,000 fine, or both. The FBI is now investigating other cases of injured officers in Buffalo because of the high number on leave to determine if any others are committing fraud.

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