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Columbia Falls man pleads guilty to work comp fraud, ordered to pay nearly $46K in restitution

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HELENA, Montana — A Columbia Falls man has been ordered to pay nearly $46,000 in restitution for worker's compensation fraud.

The Department of Justice says Salvador Maldonado-Medina pleaded guilty July 2 in Helena to felony theft and employer misconduct for receiving benefits from the Montana State Fund for a 2013 knee injury that he reported happened at his Kalispell restaurant, but actually happened at his roofing business. He did not have required work comp coverage on the employees of his roofing business.

Maldonado-Medina was given a six-year deferred sentence.

Prosecutors say the State Fund paid just over $39,000 in medical benefits for Maldonado-Medina's knee injury and $6,765 in wage loss benefits before learning he was injured while roofing. They alleged he collected wage loss benefits while continuing to work for the roofing business.

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