Eight persons nabbed as suspects in a Caja disability scam

Judicial police detained eight persons, three women and five men, Wednesday in an investigation of false disability claims.
Investigators conducted five raids to make the arrests and gain evidence.

The individuals are charged with faking disability so they would get a 60 percent salary payment from the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social. At the same time they continued to work at their regular jobs, said the Poder Judicial.

The amount of money involved is 200 million colons or about $400,000, said the Poder Judicial.

Arrests were made in Barva de Heredia and in San Rafael de Alajuela.

The Judicial Investigating Organization said that two
individuals in Heredia recruited persons in an industrial zone in Alajuela and inserted their name in a computerized system that listed them as disabled.

The Caja routinely makes disability pay to workers after they have been off the job for three days. The usual amount is 60 percent of the reported salary.

The Judicial police said that the group was well organized with division of labor. Some of those arrested Wednesday created documents that falsely verified the illness or disability. Others just loaned the enterprise their bank account. Those who did so received some money and kicked back some to the originators of the scheme, said the Judicial police.

The Poder Judicial identified the men arrested by the last names of Benavides, Alvarado, Altamirano, Azofeifa and Zúñiga. The women were identified by the last names of Madrigal, Solís and Montero.

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