Florida Man Sentenced for Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud Ex-Wife and Co-Defendant Pleads Guilty to Same Charge

SIOUX FALLS, SD—U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Florida man charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud was sentenced on Monday, April 18, 2011, by U.S. District Judge Lawrence L. Piersol.

Vij Misir, age 46, was sentenced to 36 months of imprisonment, three years of supervised release, and restitution in the amount of $1.5 million to Midland National Life Insurance Company of Sioux Falls and $495,000 to West Coast Life. Just before Misir’s sentencing, his ex-wife and co-defendant, Rajmatee Kapadia, also appeared before Judge Piersol and pled guilty to the same charge.

Rajmatee Kapadia entered her guilty plea to the same count, conspiracy to commit mail fraud, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years along with a potential maximum fine of $250,000. In her plea agreement, Kapadia accepted joint and several liability for the insurance restitution amounts imposed upon Misir.

Misir and Kapadia were indicted for conspiracy to commit mail fraud by a federal grand jury on September 15, 2009. The indictment charged that in October 2003, Vij Misir and his then-wife, Kapadia, faked Misir’s death during a family trip to Malaysia. Prior to and during this time, they were having serious financial problems. They had amassed three separate life insurance policies on Misir’s life, totaling $7 million in coverage. Kapadia was sole beneficiary on the policies. After staging his death, Kapadia made claims on the three insurance policies, and she ultimately collected $1,995,000. Misir remained in hiding for just over five years until, on December 11, 2008, he presented himself at the United States Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, attempting to renew his U.S. passport. Misir pled guilty to the indictment on October 10, 2010.

On November 2, 2010, Kapadia was charged in a superceding indictment with two counts of fraud against the Social Security Administration for allegedly making a false application and then receiving $56,703 in survivor benefits for herself and their two children. As part of her plea today, those Social Security fraud charges are to be dismissed, but Kapadia has agreed to pay $56,703 in restitution to the Social Security Administration. Kapadia’s sentencing is scheduled for July 25, 2010, before U.S. District Judge Lawrence L. Piersol.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Koliner prosecuted the case.

Misir was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.