California Man Sentenced to Prison for Theft of Social Security Benefits

Monday, August 6, 2012
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FRESNO, Calif. —Keith Aaron Little, 47, of Tulare, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. ONeill to six months in federal prison for theft of government money, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced. Judge O’Neill also ordered Little to pay $64,193 in restitution and 360 hours of unpaid community service.

According to court documents, between 2004 and 2010, Little received more than $64,000 in Social Security benefits to which he was not entitled. He was the trustee for his aunt’s trust accounts and was appointed as her power of attorney. Social Security retirement benefits belonging to his aunt were deposited into one of the accounts for which Little was named as trustee. Instead of using the Social Security checks to pay for necessary living expenses and nursing home care for his aunt, he used the money for himself.

This case was the product of an investigation by the United States Social Security Administration’s Office of Inspector General and the Tulare Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Henry Z. Carbajal III prosecuted the case.