Northland man charged with stealing $144K in Social Security benefitsA Hermantown man was indicted in federal court in Minneapolis on Tuesday for allegedly stealing more than $144,000 in Social Security benefits.
By: News Tribune staff, Duluth News Tribune
A Hermantown man was indicted in federal court in Minneapolis on Tuesday for allegedly stealing more than $144,000 in Social Security benefits.
James William Smith, 51, was charged with one count of theft of government funds and three counts of making a false statement for use in determining eligibility for Social Security benefits. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison for theft of government funds and five years for each count of making a false statement.
The indictment alleges that from Jan. 1, 2007, through August 2010, Smith stole $144,293.40 in benefits from the Social Security Administration. The indictment also alleges that from March 16, 2006, through August 2010, Smith failed to disclose to the SSA his true physical condition, employment status or ability to engage in work. Instead Smith falsely represented that he suffered from early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, according to the indictment.
The case is the result of an investigation by the SSA-Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Hermantown Police Department.