Two deny cheating on workers’ comp

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The case was investigated by the state Department of Insurance. Robert Bunch’s attorney could not be reached for comment. Rosemary Bunch is being represented by the Kern County Public Defender’s Office, and no attorney has been assigned to her case yet. Limousine driver Peter Babroudi, who Wolf said lied that Rosemary Bunch had to be carried to his vehicle and had to use a wheelchair or special crutch, is charged with conspiracy and giving false information during a deposition. He has not appeared in court yet to enter a plea. A workers’ compensation appeals board judge awarded Rosemary Bunch the services of a limousine, Wolf said. A judge also assigned her the services of a caregiver – initially for 32 hours a week, later for 40 hours a week – to do laundry, housecleaning and other tasks, he said. A videotape shot surreptitiously before an earlier court appearance shows Rosemary Bunch walking from her door to the limousine while the driver carries her crutch, Wolf said. In the video, the driver hands her the crutch at the courthouse, and she straps it on before going into the courthouse, he said. ROSAMOND – A Rosamond couple pleaded not guilty to charges the two milked the state workers’ compensation system for more than $1 million over four years in direct payments, medical care and the services of a chauffeur and a housekeeper. Rosemary Bunch, a Methodist Church employee until 1995, was declared permanently and totally disabled by carpal tunnel syndrome and fibromyalgia, and her husband Robert Bunch is on total temporary disability for a 1999 elbow injury at a cement plant, a prosecutor said. “Both of them were injured. Both of them had valid claims. Both of them are exaggerating. Both of them are milking the system,” said Kern County Deputy District Attorney David Wolf. The Bunches, both 55, are charged with workers’ compensation fraud and other offenses. Both in custody, they appeared in Kern County Superior Court on Monday to plead not guilty. Other videotape shows Robert Bunch working on top of a tall metal storage building at the couple’s home and climbing up a ladder, Wolf said. Robert Bunch built most of the building while he was labeled totally disabled, Wolf said. The Bunches are jailed in lieu of $500,000 bail each. The amount was set so high because authorities had been told the couple planned to leave California. Their house is in escrow to be sold, Wolf said. Babroudi, 27, of Glendale, was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail. Charles F. Bostwick, (661) 267-5742 [email protected] local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img