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Holland couple indicted on VA, workers comp fraud charges

A federal grand jury has returned a three-count indictment charging a Holland couple with fraud in connection with Veterans Administration and Workers Compensation benefits.

Richard Klaffka, 57, and his wife, Cathleen, 61, are charged with mail fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John E. Rogowski said Richard Klaffka told the VA in 2006 that, because of a military injury in 1978, he was disabled, in a wheelchair and unable to walk. The indictment also claims Cathleen Klaffka pushed Richard Klaffka in a wheelchair while they were at the VA hospital in order to support her husband’s false claim.

The indictment also alleges that Richard Klaffka lied in order to get Workers’ Compensation benefits through his employer, the U.S. Postal Service.

Authorities said the investigation was triggered by an anonymous call to a fraud hotline.