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Exeter Man Pleads Guilty to Lying to Obtain More than $100,000 in Social Security Disability Benefits

April 11, 2024

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of New Hampshire

CONCORD – An Exeter man pleaded guilty today in federal court in connection with obtaining disability benefits for which he was not entitled, U.S. Attorney Jane E. Young announces.

James Siano, 59, pleaded guilty to one count of making false statements. U.S. District Court Judge Joseph N. Laplante scheduled sentencing for July 19, 2024. 

The defendant first applied for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA) in December 2019, when he claimed he was disabled, unable to work, and had stopped working.  He repeated those claims to the SSA multiple times through April 2021. The defendant also agreed to inform the SSA if he returned to work. However, the defendant worked as a hotel engineer regularly between 2019 and 2023, which made him ineligible for disability benefits.  Overall, the defendant obtained over $105,000 in disability payments for which he was not entitled.

The charging statute provides a sentence of no greater than 5 years in prison, 3 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 statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.

The Social Security Administration’s Office of the Inspector General led the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Alexander S. Chen is prosecuting the case.  

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