Baltimore, Maryland - A federal grand jury today indicted Samuel Morales, age 54, of Severn, Maryland, on charges of theft of government property, illegal possession of a weapon and illegal possession of a weapon not identified by a serial number.
The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Michael McGill of the Social Security Administration - Office of Inspector General, Philadelphia Field Division; and Cathy Long, Regional Director of the Federal Protective Service (FPS), Philadelphia Field Division.
According to the indictment, Morales was an employee with a company contracted by the Federal Protective Service to provide security at a warehouse in Hanover, Maryland, where property owned by the Social Security Administration (SSA) was stored.
According to the three count indictment, on November 21 and 22, 2012, Morales was assigned to guard the warehouse from 3:00 to 11:00 p.m. While on duty, Morales and others allegedly stole 15 metal cabinets containing microfiche that was stored at the warehouse. Morales and others loaded the cabinets and microfiche into two pickup trucks owned by Morales and drove away. Morales later burned the microfiche and sold the metal cabinets as scrap. The cost to the SSA of replacing the microfiche stolen by Morales exceeded $200,000.
Further, the indictment alleges that on December 4, 2012, Morales illegally possessed a 12-gauge sawed-off shotgun that was not registered to him, nor was it identified by a serial number.
Morales faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for theft of government property and for each of the two gun counts. An initial appearance has been scheduled on December 21, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the SSA OIG and FPS for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Special Assistant United States Attorney Paul Nitze, who is prosecuting the case.