OWEGO, NY (WETM) – A Tioga County man has been arrested after being charged with allegedly using someone else’s identity for 22 years to obtain additional security benefits.
He was arrested on charges of SSI fraud and aggravated identity theft in which he used someone else’s name, social security number, and date of birth to apply for and receive SSI benefits that he did not qualify for. The announcement said this started in 1999 and continues to the present.
The man was charged under the name John Doe, and his age is unknown, according to US Attorney Carla Freedman and Special Agent John Grasso. His true identity has yet to be confirmed.
Doe was arraigned before the US District Court in Syracuse and ordered to be detained pending a trial scheduled for a later date.
If convicted of SSI fraud, Doe faces a maximum of five years in prison, fines up to $250,000 and supervision for up to three years. If convicted of aggravated identity theft, he faces a mandatory minimum sentence of two years in federal prison.
Doe was brought to trial on the charges in US District Court in Syracuse, New York and ordered to be taken into custody pending a trial to be scheduled at a later date.
This case is under investigation by the Inspector General’s Social Security Administration Office, the Tioga County Sheriff’s Office, and the Tioga County Department of Social Services, and is being prosecuted by U.S. Special Assistant Attorney Adrian S. LaRochelle.