From the U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts:
BOSTON – A Dominican national pleaded guilty today in federal court in Boston to theft of public money and making a false statement on an application for Social Security benefits.
Rafael Bautista Abreu, 63, formerly of Lynn, pleaded guilty to theft of public money and making a false statement on an application for Social Security benefits. U.S. District Court Judge George A. O’Toole scheduled sentencing for June 10, 2021.
Bautista Abreu used the identity of a Puerto Rican citizen to apply for Social Security benefits and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, formerly known as Food Stamps. From September 2009 through July 2016, Bautista Abreu fraudulently received $12,222 in Food Stamps by using the stolen identity. He also received $16,080 in federally-funded MassHealth benefits from October 2008 through July 2016.
The charge of theft of public funds provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. The charge of making a false statement in an application for Social Security benefits provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Tonya Perkins, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, Boston Field Office; William S. Walker, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; and Suzanne M. Bump, State Auditor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts made the announcement today. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Burzycki of Lelling’s Major Crimes Unit is prosecuting the case.