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Long IslandCrime

Queens DA: LI cabbie faked Access-A-Ride trips, raked in nearly $70,000

A cabbie from Freeport bilked the Access-A-Ride service in New York City by filing false claims for nearly $70,000 in reimbursements using a ride-hail app, according to the Queens district attorney’s office.

The cabbie, James Laverty, 72, is accused of grand larceny and other crimes in connection with his claim he drove the same woman 661 times between September 2020 and February, the office said in a news release, which said he used the app Curb.

In fact, according to the office, he had picked her up only twice. The other times, no one was in his cab, a yellow, wheelchair accessible vehicle, except for him.

Laverty couldn't be reached for comment. He is represented by the Legal Aid Society of New York, which couldn't be reached for comment.

Details of how the scam allegedly worked and how he got caught were not disclosed in the news release, which said the inspector general of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority was involved in the investigation.

Laverty was arraigned Thursday and freed without bail. The case is due back in court Dec. 9.

Access-A-Ride, a paratransit service, provides transportation to people with disabilities or other mobility problems.

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