News and Press Releases

Cleveland pair accused of defrauding social security administration

Oct. 24, 2013

A federal indictment was filed today charging Lester K. Benson and Cheryl L. Benson, both age 53, of Cleveland, with one count of embezzling government funds, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

The indictment charges the defendants with misrepresenting information to the Social Security Administration and thereby obtaining approximately $44,605.60 in disability benefits to which neither was entitled.

The indictment follows an investigation conducted by the Social Security Administration’s Office of the Inspector General, and the case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney M. Kendra Klump.

If convicted, the defendants’ sentences will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal records, if any, the defendants’ role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.


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