Ex-NYPD lieutenant ‘stole nearly $140,000 in social security benefits meant for his children – including one who is blind’
- Michael Conway is accused of falsely claiming the money for up to 10 years
- The 60-year-old allegedly applied for benefits on behalf of eight-year-old twins
- Conway, of Queens, was arrested after his blind son, now 17, applied for benefits
A former NYPD lieutenant has appeared in court accused of stealing almost $140,000 in social security benefits earmarked for his children, one of whom is registered blind.
Michael Conway, of Queens, New York, appeared before Judge James Orenstein at Brooklyn Federal Court on Wednesday, reports the New York Daily News.
He was charged with wire fraud charges and faces up to 20 years in prison after allegedly claiming the money over the span of almost a decade.
The retired 60-year-old allegedly began receiving benefits in 2009 for a work-related injury he suffered while in the NYPD.
Michael Conway, of Queens, New York, faces up to 20 years in prison for fraud for falsely claiming the money over the span of almost a decade (stock photo)
He then allegedly applied for social security benefits on behalf of his then eight-year-old twins by falsely claiming they lived with him in his home in Queens, according to the complaint.
He was granted the funds and reportedly hoarded the money for nearly a decade until he was caught when his legally blind son, 17, applied for benefits through SSA – which helps those with disabilities, NY Daily News reports.
The teenager reportedly learned SSA had been paying benefits to him and his twins since 2007, according to the publication.
It was discovered Mr Conway had allegedly pocketed $138,016.60 intended for his children, the complaint said.
The 60-year-old reportedly began receiving benefits in 2009 for a work-related injury he suffered while in the NYPD (stock photo)
Prosecutors say their mother was unaware of the fraud and had told SSA she was awarded custody in 2002, the publication reports.
U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Richard Donoghue announced the charges against Mr Conway who attended a court appearance on Wednesday in Brooklyn.
He said in a statement: ‘As alleged in the complaint, for nearly a decade, the defendant committed a fraud on his family and SSA by unlawfully collecting and keeping funds that had been provided for the care of his children based on false statements he made to the government.’
‘This Office will remain vigilant in identifying and prosecuting those like the defendant who collect benefits to which they are not entitled,’ the statement goes on to say.’