Postal Service Employee Sentenced To 2 1/2 Years In Federal Prison For Faking Disabilities And Defrauding Government Programs
Anchorage, Alaska – Acting U.S. Attorney Kevin R. Feldis announced today that Amancio Zamora Agcaoili, Jr. was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Sharon L. Gleason to federal prison after pleading guilty to ten counts of wire fraud, theft of government funds, Federal Employees’ Compensation Act fraud, and social security fraud.
Agcaoili, 57, was sentenced to serve 30 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release, to pay restitution of $365,831.50 to the United States Department of Labor Office of Workers’ Compensation and the Social Security Administration, and to forfeit $14,141 cash which had been seized from his residence.
According to court filings, for at least five years, between 2009 and 2014, Agcaoili, a United States Postal Service employee working in Anchorage, Alaska, devised a scheme to fake disabilities and defraud the Department of Labor Office of Workers’ Compensation Program (OWCP) and the Social Security Administration Disability Insurance Benefits (DIB) program. Agcaoili received both federal workers’ compensation and federal social security disability payments by misrepresenting the nature and extent of his injury, and concealing the fact that he was working and earning income while receiving disability payments from government programs. Despite Agcaoili’s disability claims, Agcaoili engaged in numerous physical activities throughout the last five years showing that he was faking the extent of his injuries in order to obtain worker’s compensation and social security payments. For example, Agcaoili went dipnetting and fishing every year on the Copper River and the Kenai River, went dancing and sledding, and took vacations to Hawaii, Canada, and the Philippines. Despite his active lifestyle and clear physical capabilities, Agcaoili continued to maintain that he was incapable of working, going so far as to walk with a cane when he visited a doctor. Every year, Agcaoili submitted false certifications and lied to the federal government stating that he did not perform any work, when in reality he was working and receiving income for performing services such as preparing immigration paperwork and tax returns for hundreds of other individuals out of his office located behind his house.
Agcaoili also did not report to the Department of Labor that he received social security disability payments. In addition, Agcaoili concealed and failed to disclose to the Social Security Administration that he was receiving Department of Labor workers’ compensation payments so that he would continue receiving social security disability payments to which he was not entitled. As a result of his scheme, he received at least approximately $365,831.50 in illegally obtained federal disability payments through the Department of Labor OWCP and the Social Security Administration DIB program.
In sentencing Agcaoili, Judge Gleason noted the need for the sentence to deter not only the defendant but also other people from abusing federal programs. Judge Gleason also noted that the consequence of a term of imprisonment is a necessary form of deterrence for white collar crimes.
“Thirty months in prison will serve as a deterrent to others who are tempted to try similar scams. Agcaoili cheated every one of us when he lied about his injuries and his inability to work in order to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in worker’s compensation and disability payments,” said Kevin Feldis, First Assistant U.S. Attorney and Criminal Division Chief for the District of Alaska. “Nobody should tolerate such fraud, and each time someone intentionally defrauds the United States in order to receive federal benefits, he or she undermines the integrity of these federal programs, making it less likely that they will be available for those who truly need them. Our office places a priority on prosecuting those who choose to criminally misuse and abuse federal programs and funds for their own personal gain, and we commend those who investigate and report these offenses.”
Mr. Feldis commends the United States Postal Service Office of the Inspector General and Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General for conducting the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Agcaoili.