You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Morris County, New Jersey, Plastic Surgeon Charged with Stealing Social Security Benefits from Disabled Son

NEWARK, N.J. – A retired plastic surgeon from Chatham, New Jersey, has been charged with stealing more than $80,000 in social security benefits from his severely disabled son, U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman announced today.

Richard H. McShane, 78, of Chatham, New Jersey, was arrested this morning by agents with the U.S. Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General and charged by complaint with one count of theft of government funds and four counts of wire fraud.  McShane is scheduled to appear at 2:00 p.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge James B. Clark III in Newark federal court.

According to the complaint:

McShane’s son suffered severe brain injury after a 2004 car accident that killed his mother, McShane’s wife.  As a result of the car accident, the child suffered permanent and life-threatening injuries, including partial paralysis in his upper and lower extremities. The complaint alleges that between 2005 and 2012, McShane falsely represented to the Social Security Administration that the child resided with him in the United States, when in fact the child lived with his maternal grandparents in Ukraine.  During that time period, the Social Security Administration sent McShane, as the representative payee for the child, monthly payments between $606.00 and $1,069.00.  The funds were wired by the Social Security Administration to a New Jersey bank account controlled by McShane. The payments were supposed to be used for the care and maintenance of the child. The complaint alleges that the child’s grandparents, who have provided for the child’s basic needs, including food, clothing, shelter, and medical care, received little or no financial assistance from McShane since at least 2005.

McShane faces a maximum penalty of 10 years’ imprisonment on the theft of government funds charge, and a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment on the wire fraud charges.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the U.S. Social Security Administration – Office of the Inspector General, Office of Investigations, New York Field Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Edward J. Ryan, for the investigation leading to today’s charges.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth M. Harris of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Organized Crime/Gangs Unit.

The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.


Defense counsel: TBD

Updated September 11, 2015