Hazleton Man Sentenced For $150,000 Fraud
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Joseph M. Yesvetz, age 57, of Hazleton, Pennsylvania was sentenced today by U.S. District Court Judge Robert D. Mariani to 18 months’ imprisonment, two years of supervised release, and $150,000 restitution in connection with making a false claim for benefits under the Department of Labor’s Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program (EEOICP).
According to United States Attorney Peter J. Smith, EEOICP is meant to compensate individuals who suffer work-related health conditions due to exposure to toxic substances in the work place. Yesvetz filed a claim on behalf of his father who died in 2001 after working at a beryllium plant and who allegedly suffered from chronic beryllium disease. Yesvetz was charged with lying on the claim form by failing to report his prior conviction in 2008 for mail fraud in connection with his receipt of over $88,000 in Pennsylvania state workers’ compensation benefits meant for his deceased father. Yesvetz received $150,000 in April 2012 as a result of his false claim under the EEOICP.
The case was investigated by the Department of Labor Inspector General’s Office and was prosecuted by Senior Litigation Counsel Bruce Brandler.