A missing swimmer from Long Island who faked his death for what appeared to be both personal and financial reasons, allowing his wife to mourn his passing as he partied in a Florida hotel, has been arrested and charged with insurance fraud.
On August 3, missing Long Island man Richard Roth — who disappeared days earlier in the surf at a Long Island beach — turned up in the Carolinas, pulled over for a traffic infraction and flagged as a missing person.
Roth’s wife, originally grieving for what she had initially believed was his drowning death, said that her husband had faked his own demise with the help of his son, Jonathan. Evidence supporting the assertion of Roth’s wife seemed compelling, as he had increased his life insurance in the time before he allegedly died while swimming.
Oh, he also hatched the entire plot over email along with his son, leaving a trail for his wife and authorities to find basically immediately after he was lost in the ocean.
Earlier this month, Jonathan Roth was charged with insurance fraud and accused of aiding his father in faking his death. According to a criminal complaint filed at the time of his arrest, the younger Roth “was fully aware that his father never walked into the water and had in fact driven off in his own personal vehicle.”
Today, after 10 days of psychiatric treatment, Roth was arrested and charged with insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, and falsely reporting an incident. Roth, who plans to plead not guilty to the charges, claims that his son was the only person trying to commit insurance fraud and that his sole intention was to escape the stressors of his life.
Police estimate the search for the missing Long Island swimmer cost “tens of thousands” of dollars in the days following his disappearance.