St. Louis County man who admitted elder fraud admits disability fraud

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A St. Louis County, Missouri man who last year admitted financially exploiting two elderly women admitted on Thursday that he was committing disability fraud while doing so.

Gino Rives, 36, of Edmundson, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in St. Louis to five counts of theft of government funds. He admitted fraudulently applying for payments from the Social Security Administration’s Supplemental Security Income Program in 2010. He claimed to have a mental health disorder and pretended to be incapable of answering basic questions during an interview with an SSA representative on May 14, 2010, and during a psychological evaluation with an SSA psychologist on August 30, 2010. He falsely claimed to have difficulty concentrating, following instructions, completing tasks, and with his memory. He claimed he had never been employed, could not drive, was unable to handle his financial affairs, and had no assets.

Rives admitted concealing his employment in the construction and tree trimming industries, his 
participation in competitive mixed martial arts, his ownership of houses and vehicles, and his receipt of more than $721,692 since 2021. Rives fraudulently received more than $91,000 via his disability fraud.

In October, Rives pleaded guilty to one count of access device fraud and one count of fraudulently affecting transactions and admitted exploiting two elderly women for years. He obtained four vehicles and checks totaling at least $500,000 from one woman moved the other woman out of her home and began renting it to his mother.

Rives is scheduled to be sentenced on the disability fraud case on April 17 and the elder fraud case on March 14.

The Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General and the U.S. Secret Service investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tracy Berry is prosecuting the case.

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