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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Marin Resident Charged With Fraudulently Misrepresenting Military Service

SAN FRANCISCO – Federal charges were filed against Gregory Bruce Allen yesterday for fraudulently representing that he received the Purple Heart military medal, announced Acting United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge David J. Johnson.  The charges include the allegation that Allen made the representation with the intent to obtain money, property, and other tangible benefits.

The allegations were made in an information filed in federal court yesterday.  According to the information, beginning no later than October 19, 2013, Allen, 68, of Santa Rosa, fraudulently held himself out to be the recipient of a Purple Heart.  Additional papers filed by the government explain that Allen allegedly served in the United States Navy for about eight months during 1968 and 1969 but was discharged due to a previously unreported knee injury.  Allen nevertheless ran a business as a personal trainer and started a military recruit training program for youths interested in military service in part by representing to others that he was a decorated 1st Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps who served in the Vietnam and Gulf Wars.  Allen also allegedly held himself out as a Purple Heart recipient in connection with fundraising efforts that resulted in donations of approximately $23,000 into accounts that Allen controlled.  Allen was charged with one count of fraudulent representations about receipt of military decorations or medals, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 704(b).  The offense is a Class A Misdemeanor. 

No appearance in federal court has been scheduled yet.  An information merely alleges that crimes have been committed, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  If convicted, the maximum statutory penalty for a violation of 18 U.S.C. ? 704 is one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.  Additional fines and supervised release also may be imposed.  However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. ? 3553.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew F. Dawson is prosecuting the case.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Updated March 17, 2016