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Press Release

Essex County Man Indicted for Making a False Statement to the VA

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Alex Cheney, age 55, of Moriah, New York, was arraigned today on an indictment alleging he made a false statement to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in order to receive Individual Unemployability benefits. 

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and Special Agent in Charge Sean J. Smith, VA Office of Inspector General, Northeast Field Office. 

The indictment alleges that in September 2016, Cheney falsely certified on an employment questionnaire that he was not employed at any time during the prior 12 months when he was, in fact, working in construction and earning wages.  The charge in the indictment is merely an accusation. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty

Cheney was arraigned today before United States Magistrate Judge Christian F. Hummel and released on his own recognizance.  Cheney faces a maximum of 5 years in prison and up to 3 years of post-imprisonment supervised release.   He also faces a maximum $250,000 fine.  A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors.

This case is being investigated by the VA Office of Inspector General and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ashlyn Miranda. 

Updated August 14, 2019

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