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Syracuse Man Charged with Cashing Dead Parent’s Workers Compensation Checks in Oswego and Onondaga Counties

A Syracuse man has been charged with cashing his dead father’s Worker’s Compensation checks for several months.

Michael L. Leclair, 37, of Syracuse, has been charged with Grand Larceny in the 3rd Degree, Possession of a Forged Instrument in the 2nd Degree, both Class D felonies, and Grand Larceny in the 4th Degree, a Class E Felony.

The Oswego County Self-Insurance Plan for Workers Compensation had issued claim checks to the defendant’s late father during his lifetime; all workers’ compensation checks allegedly cashed by the defendant were issued after the father’s death.

The self-insurance plan covers municipal workers employed by cities, towns, villages and county government within Oswego County. Police allege that the plan was not made aware of the passing of the defendant’s father until several months later.

Police allege the defendant made a conscious effort to cash the checks at several different branches of the same banking institution in both Oswego and Onondaga counties. The defendant will be prosecuted in both counties.

“Workers compensation fraud costs everyone,” said Oswego County Legislature Chairman Barry Leemann. “We certainly appreciate the efforts of the County Attorney’s Office and the State Police in investigating this case.”

Mr. Leclair is scheduled to appear in Oswego City Court on Feb. 22. There will be a separate appearance in Clay Town Court.

[Most language in this report was taken from the county’s news release of the arrest.]