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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Louisiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 19, 2018

Northshore Mortgage Broker Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to the Social Security Administration

NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Peter G. Strasser announced that JAMES BRIANT, age 68, a resident of Covington, Louisiana and mortgage broker and senior loan officer at Alpha Mortgage, LLC pleaded guilty yesterday to making false statements to the Social Security Administration in order to obtain Social Security Disability Payments.

According to the Bill of Information, from on or about June 10, 2010, the defendant, JAMES BRIANT, applied for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration, a department and agency of the United States, for a back disorder and heart disease. Thereafter, in December of 2011, he began receiving monthly disability benefits of approximately, $2,370, based on the representation that he was unable to work. During the time he received disability payments, the defendant, JAMES BRIANT, had an obligation to report any income he made to the SSA.

At a time unknown, but prior to September 2012, the defendant, JAMES BRIANT, began working as a loan officer and mortgage broker at Alpha Mortgage, L.L.C, earning a salary. He worked there through in or around June 2017 and never reported to the SSA that he was working or earned any income. On or about December 15, 2015, BRIANT completed a Social Security Disability form and submitted it to the SSA, an SSA-Form 795, “Statement of Claimant.” In this statement, he signed and certified, under penalty of perjury that he had not worked since 2011, knowing full well that this statement was materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent.

BRIANT is scheduled to be sentenced on January 24, 2019 before United States District Court Judge Barry W. Ashe. He faces a statutory maximum sentence of 5 years in prison, a term of 3 years of supervised release, restitution of $134,194 and a special assessment of 100.

U.S. Attorney Strasser commended special agents of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, who investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sharan Lieberman, who is in charge of the prosecution.

 

 

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Updated October 19, 2018