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Fraud Does Not Pay With VA

Veronica Dale Hahn

By Debbie Gregory.

A 60-year-old Florida woman was sentenced to nine months in prison and ordered to pay back $394,800.85 in restitution after pleading guilty to fraudulently claiming she was blind in order to receive veteran’s benefits. The sentence was announced by Christopher P. Canova, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida

Veronica Dale Hahn lied from November 2001 to February 2016 about being rendered blind in both eyes, which she claimed to be service related.

But less than a year after receiving her disability benefits for vision loss, she obtained driver’s licenses in Alabama, Florida and New Mexico all without any vision restrictions.

In addition to passing the vision exams she was also seen driving her personal automobile on numerous occasions. She was also able to perform work as a case manager and transition counselor at several state correctional facilities.

“Instead of providing benefits and assistance to worthy veterans who are justifiably in need, significant resources from the Department of Veterans Affairs were diverted to uncover an extensive and persistent fraud by Ms. Hahn, who repeatedly gave dishonest information and collected hundreds of thousands of dollars to which she was not entitled,” said Canova. “This case sends the message that you cannot make false disability claims and just walk away from such a crime.”

Monty Stokes, the Special Agent in Charge from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General said that this sentencing was the result of a successful multiyear investigation. “VA Disability Compensation Benefits are intended to provide for veterans with injuries or diseases related to their military service. Because of the successful investigative and prosecutive efforts of the VA OIG and the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Veronica Hahn’s greed and deception will not go unchecked.”

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.

Army Deserter Who Faked Identity, Wounds For Benefits Facing Prison

fraud2

By Debbie Gregory.

A 64-year-old Army deserter from Morganton, NC is accused of receiving tens of thousands of dollars in veteran benefits by faking his identity, war experience and war wounds.

Roy Lee Ross Jr., a.k.a. Daniel Alfred Sullivan Jr., was indicted on one count of executing a scheme to defraud a health benefit organization (the VA), which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine; and two counts of making false statements in connection with the delivery of health care benefits by the VA, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

He is also charged with two counts of stealing from the VA, a charge that carries a potential maximum prison term of five years and a $250,000 fine, and one count of a making false claim for travel benefits from the VA, which carries a potential maximum prison term of five years and a $250,000 fine, according to information from U.S. Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose.

Ross enlisted in the Army in 1973 and was stationed stateside and in West Germany.

But he never served in Vietnam or Korea, was not in the Special Forces and never was wounded as he claimed, according to the indictment.

While stationed in Hawaii in 1978, he went AWOL, was caught and instead of undergoing a court-martial, was discharged Under Conditions Other Than Honorable.

By 2007, the indictment says, Ross began to falsely represent himself to the Charles George VA Medical Center in Asheville as a U.S. Army veteran named Daniel Alfred Sullivan Jr. He claimed to have served in the Special Forces, been wounded in combat and honorably discharged.

Ross claimed he suffered from nightmares caused by his wartime service and combat injuries, prosecutors said.

As a result, he was diagnosed with service-related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and began receiving health benefits from the VA.

He filed for and received disability-based compensation at a rate of 60 percent and a retroactive lump sum of $18,349, and began receiving a monthly tax-free compensation of $1,026.

In 2014, he filed for more compensation, claiming he suffered pain from being shot in the neck during combat.

His disability rating was increased, reflecting an increase in his monthly tax-free compensation to $1,743.

In 2015, as Daniel Sullivan, he filed a third claim for “increased evaluation,” and was awarded $3,490 in back payment, and his monthly disability payment was increased to $2,906.

The indictment says Ross also received about $57,000 in health care benefits from the VA to which he was not lawfully entitled.

Besides monetarily ripping off the VA, Ross stole resources that should have gone to those who truly need them, and EARNED them.

Disgraceful!

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.