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Press Release

Laurel County Man Sentenced to Prison for Social Security Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Kentucky

LONDON, Ky. – Harold Arnold, 69, of London, was sentenced in federal court on Tuesday, by U.S. District Judge Claria Horn Boom, to 31 months in prison for defrauding the Social Security Administration (SSA) and committing aggravated identity theft.

Arnold previously admitted that, after escaping from custody in Georgia in 1979, he unlawfully assumed the identity of his deceased cousin and moved to Kentucky, where he worked under the assumed identity from 1981 to 2009.  He then applied for and received Social Security benefits, from October 2010 through July 2016.  Arnold failed to truthfully disclose his own identity, applied for benefits using a fraudulent identity; and was a fugitive from justice, rendering him ineligible for the payments that he received.  According to his plea agreement, the total loss to the SSA was $83,561.90, which Arnold has been ordered to repay.

Under federal law, Arnold must serve, at a minimum, 85 percent of his prison sentence.  He will be under the supervision of the United States Probation Office for one year after being released.

Robert M. Duncan, Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, and Rod Owens, Special Agent-in-Charge, SSA Office of the Inspector General, Atlanta Field Division—Nashville, jointly announced the sentence.

The investigation was directed by the Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General.  The United States was represented by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney James T. Chapman.

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PHONE: (859) 685-4887

Updated January 30, 2020

Financial Fraud
Identity Theft