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Press Release

Burtonsville Man Admits He Stole $353,506 In Social Security Benefit Checks Over A 20 Year Period

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

Greenbelt, Maryland – Thomas Jefferson Kirby, Jr., age 50, of Burtonsville, Maryland pleaded guilty today to theft of government property.

The plea agreement was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Special Agent in Charge Michael McGill of the Social Security Administration (SSA) - Office of Inspector General, Philadelphia Field Division.

According to his plea agreement, Kirby’s father received social security retirement benefits based on the father’s earnings record. At the time of his father’s death, the benefits were paid by direct deposit to a bank account on which Kirby was a co-signor. Kirby’s father died on April 2, 1994. His death was not reported to SSA. SSA paid a total of $353,506 from April 1994 until December 2013 when the benefits were terminated. At the time benefits were terminated, the father’s monthly benefit amount was $1,820. Kirby used his father’s benefits to pay for his own personal expenses.

Kirby faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. Kirby has agreed to pay restitution of $353,506. U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm scheduled sentencing for December 16, 2014, at l:30 p.m.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the Social Security Administration - OIG for its work in the investigation, and thanked Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul K. Nitze, assigned from the Social Security Administration, who is prosecuting the case.

Updated January 26, 2015