A Brooklyn man is facing time behind bars for stealing the identity of his dead mother. Thomas Prusik Parkin has been found guilty of grand larceny, mortgage fraud and criminal possession of a forged instrument.
Parkin took advantage of more than $115,000 of government benefits which were addressed to his deceased mom. Irene Prusik died in 2003, but she still received Social Security benefits until June 2009.
Over the course of six years, Parkin impersonated his mother by donning a platinum wig and red dress when he went to cash the checks. And Parkin wasn’t alone. His partner in crime, Mhilton Rimolo, posed as his mother’s nephew when the con went out in public.
“These defendants ran a multi-year campaign of fraud that was unparalleled in its scope and brazenness,” Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes said in a statement.
They were even captured on video at the Department of Motor Vehicles renewing the dead woman’s driver’s license.
The con artists were caught during a real-estate issue. Parkin had been unable to maintain ownership of his mother’s house. The house was sold in a foreclosure and the new owner accused Parkin of filing a false affidavit.
Parkin told the district attorney his mom would meet with them.
“When prosecutors and detective investigators arrived, they found Prusik-Parkin dressed as his 77-year-old mother, wearing a red cardigan, lipstick, manicured nails and breathing through an oxygen tank,” the DA’s office said.
The duo was indicted on 47 counts each. Last week, a jury found Parkin guilty of 11 criminal counts. He faces up to 83 years in prison when he is sentenced May 21. Rimolo, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years in prison.