A Chatham NJ man has been arrested after allegedly stealing more than $80,000 from his disabled son.
The suspect, a 78-year-old retired surgeon, has been charged with wire fraud for allegedly defrauding the federal government over several years.
According to federal prosecutors in the case, the suspect lied to the Social Security Administration when he claimed to need monthly payments to cover his disabled child’s care and treatment. However, the suspect’s son was not residing with his father in New Jersey; instead, he was actually living with his maternal grandparents in Ukraine.
The suspect reportedly received monthly payments from the federal government. The payments ranged from $606 to $1,069.
Prosecutors allege that the suspect never sent any of the money to the boy’s grandparents in Ukraine.
The suspect’s son was disabled when he suffered a permanent brain injury and was partially paralyzed in a 2004 car crash. The boy was just 1 year old at the time.
The car accident also caused the tragic death of the boy’s mother.
The alleged fraud was investigated by the U.S. Social Security Administration’s Office of the Inspector General, located in New York City. After investigators determined that the suspect had stolen the money, federal charges were filed against the suspect.
Now the suspect is required to appear in U.S. District Court in Newark New Jersey to answer the charges.
If the suspect is ultimately convicted on the wire fraud charges, he could potentially be sentenced to as many as 30 years in federal prison.
For further information about this case, read the NJ.com article entitled “N.J. Father Arrested on Charges of Stealing $80,000 in Benefits from Disabled Son.”