Utah man charged with defrauding Montana worker's compensation fund of nearly $100K


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HELENA, Montana — A Utah man who suffered a knee injury while working at the Montana State Prison is charged with defrauding the state worker's compensation fund by collecting total disability benefits while running a construction company.

The Independent Record reports (http://bit.ly/1udovai ) the attorney general filed a felony theft charge against 51-year-old Benjie Leroy Christensen of Vernal, Utah, on Sept. 9 alleging he illegally collected nearly $100,000 in benefits from June 2008 until March of this year.

Charging documents say Christensen started collecting permanent disability benefits in April 2004.

A nurse visited Christensen in July 2011 due to a lack of information from his doctor. The nurse said he walked with a limp but appeared otherwise healthy.

Prosecutors say a private investigator documented Christensen working numbers full days at construction sites last fall. Christensen told the state he spent a lot of his life in bed.

Information from: Independent Record, http://www.helenair.com

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