Attorney General Laxalt Announces Guilty Plea of Las Vegas Man for Unemployment Insurance Fraud

February 28, 2017

Las Vegas, NV – Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt announced that Richard James Penardo, Jr., 43, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty to one count of Insurance Fraud, a category “B” felony, for filing fraudulent unemployment insurance claims. The fraudulent acts were committed between July and September 2011.

    Penardo worked with one or more coconspirators who filed unemployment claims on his behalf. In doing so, they falsely informed the State’s Employment Security Division that Penardo was unable to work, but failed to disclose that he was, in fact, incarcerated in the Clark County Detention Center and High Desert State Prison during the time the claims were filed. As a result of these fraudulent claims, Penardo and/or his coconspirator(s) collected over $4,700 in unemployment benefits insurance benefits.

      “The State takes the protection of public funds very seriously,” said Laxalt “and will continue to investigate and prosecute unemployment insurance fraud to protect Nevada’s consumers and the integrity of the insurance system.”

        Last year, coconspirator Tanya Boggio pleaded guilty to category “C” felony unemployment insurance fraud as a result of her role in the conspiracy, and was sentenced to 12 to 60 months in prison.

          Category “B” unemployment insurance Fraud is punishable by up to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of no more than $10,000. The sentencing hearing for Penardo is scheduled for June 22, 2017, in the Eighth Judicial District Court.

            This case was investigated by the State’s Department of Corrections and Employment Security Division, and was prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Office.

              The amended criminal information for Richard James Penardo, Jr. is attached. If you or someone you know has information regarding a suspected instance of unemployment insurance fraud, you may file a complaint with the State’s Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation here.