Bennettsville Woman Pleads Guilty to Theft of Disability Benefits
Contact Person: Beth Drake (803) 929-3000
Columbia, South Carolina ----United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated that Linda Barton, age 62, of Bennettsville, SC, pled guilty in federal court in Florence, to theft of government funds, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 641. United States District Judge Terry L. Wooten of Florence accepted the plea and will impose sentence after he has reviewed the presentence report which will be prepared by the U.S. Probation Office.
Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that Barton concealed the fact that she had a business interest in the Stockyard Bar & Grill when applying for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration. As a result of her misrepresentation, the Social Security Administration awarded Barton more than $30,000 in disability benefits from February 2005 to April 2011.
Mr. Nettles stated the maximum penalty Barton can receive is a fine of $250,000.00 and/or imprisonment for 10 years, plus a special assessment of $100.00.
The case was investigated by agents of the Social Security Administration. Assistant United States Attorney William E. Day, II of the Florence office handled the case.