Hospital worker ‘stole identities from dying patients to try and claim COVID benefits from his drug dealer friend’ as he worked there part-time during the pandemic to ‘give back to the community’
- Matthew Lombardo, believed to be in his 40s, worked part-time at Scripps Health in San Diego
- On his LinkedIn page, he says the work was his way of ‘giving back to the community’
- In August last year, he is said to have started stealing patients’ identities during the pandemic
- He and friend Konrad Piekos, described as a drug dealer, then used the identities to try to get COVID-19 unemployment benefits
- It’s unclear if your attempts were successful, but they used the data of a homeless woman and a heart attack victim
- The details were revealed in a search warrant obtained by Forbes
- Lombardo was arrested after he was caught driving without a license plate
- Officers found $40,000 cash in his car and an assault rifle
- He has yet to be charged, but has been arrested – it’s unclear when he’s due to appear in court next
A part-time hospital worker in San Diego has been accused of trying to use the identities of dying patients to claim COVID-19 benefits with the help of his “drug dealer” friend.
According to a federal search warrant obtained by: Forbes, hospital worker Matthew Lombardo would find people in Scripps Health, San Diego, who were “on the road” and using their data to apply for unemployment benefits that were increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
He also helped his friend, Konrad Piekos, who is described in the search warrant as a “drug dealer.” He allegedly told Lombardo to find vulnerable people in the hospital, steal their records and return them to him so they could claim benefits to which they were not entitled.
Sometimes it was as simple as taking a photo of the patient’s insurance card. Other times, they were given social security numbers and dates of birth, according to the warrant.
Both men were arrested earlier this year and Piekos has pleaded not guilty, while Lombardo has yet to be charged.
It is unclear if their scam actually worked, or if they were caught trying to do it.
According to a federal search warrant obtained by Forbes, hospital worker Matthew Lombardo would find people in Scripps Health, San Diego, who were “on their way” and use their data to apply for unemployment benefits that were increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. Above is his LinkedIn photo
The search warrant alleges that Lombardo used the identity of a homeless woman and a victim of a heart attack. It is not stated how many identities they tried to use.
In an alleged conversation between the pair, Lombardo asked, “We want old people?”
Piekos is said to have replied, ‘No. I mean, someone 55 or younger on the road… maybe a few more days or something.”
Lombardo said, “Okay. I’m going to dig and see what I can find. There must be a few.”
Lombardo only worked part-time at the hospital while also running his own marijuana business.
Lombardo worked at Scripps Health Hospital in San Diego Diego from August 2020 to April this year
Lombardo says on his LinkedIn page that he worked part-time at the hospital to ‘give back to the community’
On a now-deleted LinkedIn page, he said his hospital work is “giving back to the community.”
He was arrested in July this year after being arrested for driving without a license plate.
Police found an assault rifle and $40,000 in his car and became suspicious, so obtained a search warrant for his house and property, and the property of Piekos.
For example, they would have discovered the conspiracy in text messages on a telephone.
Piekos’ lawyer denied the allegations to Forbes, saying, “Mr. Piekos has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting further discovery by the US Attorney’s Office.”
It is unclear when Lombardo will appear in court again.