Man charged with stealing Social Security benefits

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SAN DIEGO — A U.S. citizen was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Diego Monday on charges of stealing nearly $100,000 in Social Security disability benefits by concealing his overseas residency for almost a decade.

An arrest warrant has been issued for 58-year-old Andre Lorenzo Jackson, who is believed to still be living in Germany, according to prosecutors.

While allegedly collecting ill-gotten monthly Supplemental Security Income payments, the defendant, nicknamed “Andre the Player Jackson,” traveled abroad extensively and promoted himself through social media as a professional athlete, entertainer and musician, according to the indictment.

According to a 10-count indictment returned last week, Jackson began defrauding the Social Security Administration in February 2005 by falsely claiming to live in San Diego and by concealing his extensive foreign travel. Through those alleged illicit actions, Jackson was able to continue collecting SSI payments he had started receiving in 1986, the U.S. government alleges.

According to the indictment, Jackson fraudulently claimed to the SSA on numerous occasions that he was eligible to receive the benefits, which are available only to U.S. citizens.

While fraudulently receiving the payments via an American bank account, Jackson would withdraw the funds using ATMs or debit-card transactions to pay for his personal expenses, prosecutors allege.

“Jackson is accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars intended to help our country’s most vulnerable,” San Diego-area U.S. Attorney Adam Braverman said. “Individuals who abuse the trust and generosity of federal programs will be brought to account.”

Jackson would face up to 30 years in prison and $500,000 in fines, along with restitution and property-forfeiture orders, if convicted.

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