Workers’ compensation fraud conviction reversed

The Ohio Sixth District Court of Appeals has vacated the convictions of a Northwood couple convicted of
workers’ compensation fraud last year.
The decisions were issued Monday.
Frederick Diebert, 58, and Michelle Scaggs, 38, the owners of Triple Star Roofing, were found guilty in a
jury trial in 2013. They were each sentenced to 30 months in prison in and ordered to pay more than
$200,000 in restitution after reportedly failing to pay worker’s compensation premiums for their
employees and incorrectly classifying their employees as independent contractors.
Both Diebert and Scaggs, in their appeal, in part argued that the evidence at trial was insufficient to
support their conviction.
The court, in its majority decision in both cases, found that in "reviewing the evidence in a light
most favorable to the prosecution, we find that the evidence presented by the state was not
sufficient" to prove the value of the unpaid premiums, "an essential element of workers’
compensation fraud." As a result they reversed the Wood County Court’s decision and vacated the
convictions.
Judge P. J. Yarbrough, however, offered a dissenting opinion in the Diebert matter, feeling that
sufficient evidence to convict him did exist.