Mooch

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Moochers are usually not well thought of, and neither are fraudsters. (Both prey on the generosity of others to get something they really don’t deserve.) Not all moochers are fraudsters, but fraudsters are generally considered to be moochers. An article published by the Charleston Daily Mail tells how one man mooched off of the government by continuing to collect his mother’s Social Security checks after she died.

The article states that the son continued to withdraw his mother’s Social Security benefits for nearly two years after she died. He received $24,660 before his mother’s bank detected suspicious activity and issued a fraud alert to the Social Security Administration. (According to court records, he used his mother’s debit card to spend the undeserved benefits at the grocery store, gas station and at a local restaurant.)

The 31-year-old man pleaded guilty to theft of government money and access device fraud. He is facing up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and has agreed to pay back the money he withdrew from his mother’s bank account.

Sometimes parents allow their children to mooch off of them for a period of time while trying to find a job or save some money. This man was old enough to know better than to take advantage of his deceased mother’s government benefits. (Unfortunately, the mooching will continue as taxpayers foot this fraudster’s bill, while he serves out his prison sentence.)

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Hurricane Man Admits to Social Security Fraud,” written by Andrea Lannom and published by the Charleston Daily Mail on January 7, 2015.

A Hurricane man admitted to illegally taking more than $20,000 in Social Security benefits that was paid to his dead mother.

Vallas Paul Bell, 31, was charged in a three count federal indictment with theft of government money and access device fraud. He pleaded guilty Wednesday to theft of government money and prosecutors will ask to have his other two counts dismissed at sentencing.

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Larry Benson
Larry Benson is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances for Revenue Discovery and Recovery at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. In this role, Benson is responsible for developing partnerships for the tax and revenue and child support enforcement verticals. He focuses on embedded companies that have a need for third-party analytics to enhance their current offerings.