Crime

Kuna man sentenced for Social Security fraud

Del E. Weech was sentenced Tuesday to six months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge also ordered Weech to pay $13,004 in restitution.

Weech, 59, reported he did not receive several Social Security disability checks but ended up cashing those checks and replacement checks issued to him.

Back in February 2013, the Social Security Administration sent a check for $14,929 to Weech's stepdaughter, who also receives federal disability checks. Weech cashed the check, then went to a Social Security office and claimed the check was never received. A replacement check was issued.

Three months later, in May, Weech claimed he never received his monthly $1,083 disability check. However, he cashed it four days after informing Social Security that he never received it. At the office, he was given $999.

Because he reported the check missing, a replacement check was automatically issued. A Social Security employee told Weech not to cash that check, but he did, plus an $84 check for the difference between his payment amount and what he was given at the office.

In June 2013, Weech once again reported he had not received his disability payment. He cashed that check and received another $999 in replacement funds at the Social Security office.

Weech pleaded guilty Feb. 9 in U.S. District Court in Boise to one count of making a false statement. When he reported the payments missing, he signed statements under penalty of perjury that what he was reporting was true.

In all, Weech fraudulently obtained $13,004 that he wasn't entitled to receive. In a plea agreement, Weech agreed to repay the money.

Weech had faced up to five years in prison.

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