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Daytona Beach Woman Pleads Guilty To Stealing Over $88k Of Veterans Affairs Funds

April 04, 2024

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Middle District of Florida

Orlando, Florida – United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Tijuanna J. Thomas (65, Daytona Beach) has pleaded guilty to theft of government property. Thomas faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. As part of her plea, Thomas has agreed to forfeit $88,440, the proceeds of her criminal conduct, and to make full restitution to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Social Security Administration (SSA). Thomas is scheduled to be sentenced on July 10, 2024.

According to the plea agreement, R.S. received both VA and Social Security benefits, which were direct deposited into a checking account he shared with Thomas. R.S. died on May 6, 2016. Thomas did not report R.S.’s death to the VA or the SSA, which continued to deposit benefits for R.S. into the account, thinking he was still alive. Thomas took those benefits, to which she was not entitled, and spent them on her own personal expenses.

This case was investigated by the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General’s Southeast Field Office and the Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General. It is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Del Mastro.

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