Poland Man Sentenced to Probation for Stealing VA Travel Benefits
Contact: Halsey B. Frank
Assistant United States Attorney
Tel: (207) 780-3257
Portland, Maine: United States Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II announced that Steven
Chartier, 58, of Poland, Maine, was sentenced yesterday in U.S. District Court by Judge Nancy
Torresen to three years of probation with six months of home detention for submitting false
claims to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for travel benefits. He was also ordered
to pay $10,448.06 in restitution. Chartier pled guilty to the crime on September 26, 2013.
According to court records, the defendant claimed travel benefits for 64 260 mile trips
from Limestone, Maine, in Aroostook County, to the Togus V.A. Medical Center, in Gardiner,
for the purpose of receiving medical treatment. In fact, the defendant lived in Poland, Maine,
which is about 40 miles from the VA hospital. As a result, the defendant received $10,448.06
more than he was entitled to for travel.
In fashioning the sentence, Judge Torresen observed that fraud was not new to the
defendant and stated that she would have jailed him but for the cost to the taxpayers given his
deteriorated, wheelchair-bound, medical condition.
The case was investigated by the VA, Office of Inspector General.