A former New York postal worker who said he suffered a back injury on the job 16 years ago has admitted to bilking the government out of nearly $400,000 in workers’ compensation benefits.
David VanDeusen, 56, of Tully, pleaded guilty this week in U.S. District Court to defrauding the government out of $392,000 since 1991.
While receiving monthly benefits of more than $2,000 a month, VanDeusen was also earning income from selling cars for his wife’s dealership, Double D Auto Sales. He also had income from two other sources — a driveway-sealing company and a sign-making company, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Southwick.
VanDeusen admitted that he lied when he signed sworn statements saying he had no other income besides the workers’ comp benefits.
VanDeusen stopped collecting workers’ comp in March, after prosecutors confronted his lawyer with the results of their investigation, Southwick said.
He was a mail handler with the U.S. Postal Service for five years before he said he was injured.
VanDeusen faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine or twice the amount he defrauded the government when he’s sentenced Dec. 13. Federal sentencing guidelines put his likely sentence between 18 and 27 months, Southwick said.
Information from: The Syracuse Post-Standard, www.syracuse.com
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