TV Polygraph Operator Dan Ribacoff’s International Investigative Group Allegedly Bilked Client

All in the family: International Investigative Group proprietors Daniel D. Ribacoff, daughter Lisa J. Ribacoff, and son Lance Ribacoff

Lawsuits filed in Nassau County, New York allege that TV polygraph operator Daniel D. “Dan” Ribacoff and his “family owned & operated” private investigation company, International Investigative Group, behaved negligently and bilked the plaintiffs out of millions of dollars. Kathianne Boniello reports for the New York Post:

A prominent PI firm was so eager to keep the cash coming in from rich clients, it turned a blind eye to its private eyes acting “like drunken fraternity brothers,” a new lawsuit charges.

Dan Ribacoff, a polygraph expert who bills himself as one of the top private investigators in the country and has appeared on TV shows like “Impractical Jokers” and “The Steve Wilkos Show,” displayed “willful ignorance” and took no action as the gumshoes who worked for him went rogue, according to the $10 million claim.

Ribacoff’s Long Island-based International Investigative Group exchanged thousands of text messages with underlings, encouraging them to double bill and pad hours to run up the tab for wealthy clients like Patty Hearst’s granddaughter Gillian Hearst and ice cream company heir David Smith, according to court papers.

Read the rest of the article here.

The lawsuit, Susanne Gold-Smith vs. Daniel Ribacoff et al., was filed on 18 December 2020 in the Nassau Supreme Court under index number 614735/2020. Other named defendants include Daniel Ribacoff’s son, Lance Ribacoff, his daughter, Lisa J. Ribacoff, his wife, Barbara Ribacoff, and the Ribacoffs’ company, International Investigative Group, Ltd. The 80-page statement of complaint (23 MB PDF) seeks damages of not less than $50 million and comprises nine causes of action: 1) negligent supervision, 2) negligent hiring, 3) respondeat superior, 4) respondeat superior-IIG and the Ribacoffs, 5) negligent retention, 6) negligence, 7) aiding and abetting, 8) violation of New York Business Law 84, 9) negligent infliction of emotional distress.

Daniel Ribacoff is a member of the American Polygraph Association, and his daughter Lisa Ribacoff is a member of the American Polygraph Association’s board of directors.

A prior lawsuit, David M. Smith vs. International Investigative Group et al., was filed in the Nassau Supreme Court on 31 May 2019 under index number 0607393/2019 and seeks damages of more than $18 million. The 48-page statement of complaint (2 MB PDF) in that litigation cites causes of action including breach of contract, fraud, gross negligence, and “breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing.”

In December 2019, a guest on the Steve Wilkos Show, for which Dan Ribacoff provides polygraph services, attempted suicide after Ribacoff falsely accused her of lying when she denied having burned her infant daughter. In fact, no one had burned the daughter, and lesions that appeared on her leg were the result of a ringworm infection.

Comments 8

  • Ribacoff and family apparently has been shady sleazes for a long time and associating closely with other sleazes, such as Steve Wilkos and the polygraph association.
    Looks like Karma has come back for Ringwork Ribacoff after he almost caused the death of Anca Pennington by his deception
    Wonder how the “highly prestigious and honorable ‘professional’ polygraph association” is going to deal with this .

    • Despicable acts by Ribacoff, yet I am not surprised one bit. Wanna see him get out of this one. Polygraph Association refused to hold him accountable for what he did to me. They must be proud of him now.

      • I imagine the Polygraph Association board is running around like a bunch of chickens with their heads cut off about now. They can’t really sanction Ribacoff since he is their golden child and his daughter Lisa in on the board, but, they can’t sweep this level of unethical behavior under the rug either. If opposing counsel has text messages/emails from Ribacoff’s people highlighting the wrong doing, he may not be able to dance away like he has before. I got to admit, I am having a real schadenfreude moment now.

      • Did he ever pay for what he did to you???? I watch this show every day… and now i cant help but think its all a lie. Im so sorry for what happened to you, Anca

  • I wonder if Danny boy and the other Ribacoffs would be willing to submit to polygraphs to settle the liability question.

  • I think Jerry W. Crotty II should give each member of the Ribacoff family a CVSA. Crotty after all is a recipient of the “highly prestigious Professor James L. Clayton” award for excellence. /sarc

  • I read the 80 page statement of complaint against the Ribacoffs and their sham company IIG. The Ribacoffs are a disgrace to the pseudo profession of polygraphy. Here are a couple of examples:
    ~Not just one, but many of the PIs employed by IIG sexually assaulted their surveillance target, Mrs. Gold-Smith, and at least one recorded an incident on his Apple phone and uploaded it into the cloud. Upon further reflection, this “genius” decided it may not be a good idea to have the crime recorded. So he erased the incident on his phone and in the cloud. Kind of sounds like Danny erasing a Facebook entry, right? One minor problem, Mrs. Gold-Smith’s counsel was able to recover the recording as per their complaint. IMO, criminal charges need to be entered against the Ribacoff family and their employees, maybe a RICO action since the Ribacoffs appear to be running an ongoing criminal enterprise.
    ~Another client they cheated was the Church of Scientology. The COS does not get any sympathy from non cult members for obvious reasons and especially me. IIG was hired to provide surveillance on Leah Remini, whom is considered a “suppressive person” and therefore “fair game.” The COS is known to use PIs, especially ones from firms known to be shady, such as IIG to harass their former members to add a layer of deniably in case COS is nabbed. The COS used to use their own church members but have had some embarrassing blowback. There are many YouTube videos of church members looking like evil morons.
    Anyhow, IIG may run afoul of Xenu, whom according to COS doctrine, loaded up people of space faring DC-8s dropped them in volcanos, and then set off hydrogen bombs in the volcanos.
    Anyway, read the statement of complaint. Sure it is 80 pages of legalese, but very interesting.

  • […] lawsuits filed in 2019 and 2020, Ribacoff was credibly accused of bilking a client of his private investigative firm out of millions of dollars. That didn’t get him kicked off […]

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