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Woman Sentenced To Prison For Feigning Blindness To Defraud The VA
A woman who feigned blindness to receive veterans' benefits has been sentenced to serve nine months in prison and repay hundreds of thousands of dollars, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Veronica Dale Hahn, 60, was sentenced Friday in the Panama City federal court. She pleaded guilty during her jury trial on charges of defrauding the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for years in order to receive about $400,000 in benefits. Hahn now will have to repay that amount after serving nine months in federal prison.
The U.S. Attorney's Office reported Hahn lied from November 2001 to February 2016 about being rendered blind in both eyes, which she claimed to be directly connected to her service in the military.
However, within a year of receiving her disability benefits for loss of vision, she obtained driver's licenses in New Mexico, Alabama and Florida with no vision restrictions, after passing vision exams in each state with at least 20/40 vision. During this time, Hahn also was observed driving her personal automobile on numerous occasions. Further, she worked full time as a case manager and transition counselor at several state correctional facilities, all of which required normal eyesight to perform her duties.
In the course of Hahn's jury trial in January, several government witnesses took the stand before she abruptly decided to enter a guilty plea to the charges on the second day of trial.
"Instead of providing benefits and assistance to worthy veterans who are justifiably in need, significant resources from the Department of Veterans Affairs were diverted to uncover an extensive and persistent fraud by Ms. Hahn, who repeatedly gave dishonest information and collected hundreds of thousands of dollars to which she was not entitled," said U.S. Attorney Christopher P. Canova. "This case sends the message that you cannot make false disability claims and just walk away from such a crime."
©2017 The News Herald (Panama City, Fla.). Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
A group of vets are raising money to pay for a medal the Iraqi government awarded them, but never delivered
In June 2011 Iraq's defense minister announced that U.S. troops who had deployed to the country would receive the Iraq Commitment Medal in recognition of their service. Eight years later, millions of qualified veterans have yet to receive it.
The reason: The Iraqi government has so far failed to provide the medals to the Department of Defense for approval and distribution.
A small group of veterans hopes to change that.
For a cool $8.5 million, you could be the proud owner of a "fully functioning" F-16 A/B Fighting Falcon fighter jet that a South Florida company acquired from Jordan.
The combat aircraft, which can hit a top speed of 1,357 mph at 40,000 feet, isn't showroom new — it was built in 1980. But it still has a max range of 2,400 miles and an initial climb rate of 62,000 feet per minute and remains militarized, according to The Drive, an automotive website that also covers defense topics, WBDO News 96.5 reported Wednesday.
A doctor who treated accident victims has a radioactive isotope in his body. Russia says it came from his diet
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian authorities said on Friday that a doctor who treated those injured in a mysterious accident this month had the radioactive isotope Caesium-137 in his body, but said it was probably put there by his diet.
The deadly accident at a military site in northern Russia took place on Aug. 8 and caused a brief spurt of radiation. Russian President Vladimir Putin later said it occurred during testing of what he called promising new weapons systems.
Groundwater at the Air Force Academy is contaminated with the same toxic chemicals polluting a southern El Paso County aquifer, expanding a problem that has cost tens of millions of dollars to address in the Pikes Peak region.
Plans are underway to begin testing drinking water wells south of the academy in the Woodmen Valley area after unsafe levels of the chemicals were found at four locations on base, the academy said Thursday.