Colorado Woman Who Admitted to Fraudulently Receiving SSI Sentenced to 5 Months in Prison

Monday, February 20, 2012
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The Salida woman who admitted she fraudulently collected Social Security benefits was sentenced Friday to five months in custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, followed by five months of home detention.

Kaveen Rose, 45, was ordered by U.S. District Judge Philip Brimmer to repay the full amount, $80,034, to the Social Security Administration.

"Please don't send me away from my daughter," Rose, a sole parent, pleaded with the judge. Her daughter is in high school.

"What I did was wrong," Rose said. "It will never happen again."

Brimmer said it's always regretful that "the innocent have to bear the consequences of the crime of the parent" and added Rose "is the one who brought it all about."

The judge said incarceration for Rose was called for because of "the longtime nature of the fraud" and because she lied under oath during a Social Security appeal.

He said jail time was also called for to deter other people from trying to obtain Social Security benefits to which they are not entitled.

Federal guidelines recommended a sentence ranging between 10 months and 16 months in prison. The judge said he took into consideration Rose's daughter in deciding what sentence to impose.

Rose pleaded guilty in November to concealing and failing to disclose events affecting her right to receive benefits for herself and her daughter.

Evidence presented by a prosecutor of the U.S. Attorney's Office for Colorado showed Rose's conduct relevant to the crime began in September 2006 when she applied for disability benefits. She wrote in an application she was unable to work because of a disabling condition.

The application was denied and she appealed. Evidence was that Rose, during a hearing in 2008 on her appeal, falsely testified under oath that she hadn't worked since April 2006.

Social Security began making payments to her and her daughter, based on Rose's false testimony.

Information from an informant led to an investigation showing Rose had been working and earning income from July 2006 through February 2010, making her ineligible to receive the benefits.

"If an informant had not come forward, it would still be going on to this day," said Assistant U.S. Attorney Michele Kelley.

Rose said she applied for Social Security benefits when her life turned "upside down" because of serious medical and psychiatric problems, while not receiving child financial support from her daughter's father.

To pay restitution, Rose was ordered to make monthly payments of at least 10 percent of her gross monthly wages. She will be under the supervision of a court officer for three years after she is released from custody.

The judge gave Rose an opportunity to remain with her daughter and not start serving custody time until April 16 when she is ordered to report to a facility the bureau of prisons will designate.