Stolen Honor: Man Obtains Vet Benefits With Stolen ID

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A Missouri man has been sentenced to federal prison for fraudulently receiving veterans’ benefits over an 18-month period, by using the stolen identity of a U.S. Navy veteran.

Eric D. Smith, 63, of Independence, Missouri, pleaded guilty on February 3, 2016 for using the identity of a Navy veteran from October 2012 through April 2014.  He was sentenced in federal court Thursday, September 8, to 4 years and 3 months in federal prison without parole.

He had also conned other government agencies out of benefits in Maryland, Georgia and Florida, according to a report from the Department of Justice.

In the veteran benefits fraud scam, he received about $15,459 in VA health care treatment, $12,956 in a Veterans Retraining Assistance Program, and $656 in travel benefits from the Kansas City VA Medical Center.

In addition to his prison sentence, Smith was ordered to pay back a total of $234,461 in restitution.

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