Man charged with impersonating dead mom

June 17, 2009 2:39:57 PM PDT
A man in Brooklyn is charged with posing as his own dead mother to collect social security payments and rent subsidies from the city."This guy is not stupid," District Attorney Charles Hynes said. "He's actually pretty smart. The schemes were absolutely brilliant."

That is assessment from the Brooklyn district attorney about Thomas Parkin. Investigators say for six years, the 49-year-old ran an elaborate scheme that involved him dressing as and impersonating his mother, Irene Prusik, who died in 2003.

"He wore a scarf around his neck so that it would prevent us from seeing his Adam's apple," said Michael Vecchione, of the DA's Rackets Division. "He had large sunglasses even inside the house when we went to see him. And he had an oxygen mask on his face as well."

Surveillance video taken two months ago shows Parkin, dressed as his mom, inside the Coney Island DMV office. Along with Parkin, investigators say, is Parkin's business partner Mhilton Rimolo, who acted as Mrs. Prusik's nephew.

The DA says Parkin also doctored his mother's death certificate and falsified her Social Security number and date of birth, thereby enabling him to receive $52,000 in Social Security benefits. Furthermore, say investigators, the pair fraudulently received $65,000 in city rental assistance for the Park Slope townhouse originally owned by Prusik, before it was deeded to her son and sold at a foreclosure auction. When the rightful owner tried to evict Parkin, the alleged con man filed false lawsuits and bankruptcy filings.

"For creativity, this comes out number one," Hynes said.

Parkin was to appear in court in Brooklyn on Thursday to face grand larceny, criminal impersonation and other charges.

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WEB PRODUCED BY: Bill King


NEW YORK AND TRI-STATE AREA NEWS

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