Drugs, Weapons, and Fraud


Richard Stanton, 34, of Hope, Me., pleaded guilty in federal court to a laundry list of charges including possession of heroin with intent to distribute, possession of a firearm and ammunition by a prohibited person, and making a false statement in connection with health care benefits. (This guy is in considerable trouble.)

The possession of heroin, and possession of a firearm charges, were brought against Stanton after an incident that occurred on March 18, 2019. When New Hampshire State Troopers stopped Stanton’s vehicle for having a defective tail-light, he behaved suspiciously by reaching under his seat. (He must have missed the memo on what do during a traffic stop. The bottom line is don’t reach for anything and keep your hands in plain view, preferably on the steering wheel.) Due to safety concerns, the trooper asked the suspicious driver to exit and walk to the rear of the car. His next mistake was providing incorrect information about his identity.

Officers eventually discovered that Stanton had a suspended driver’s license and outstanding warrants for his arrest in Maine. (No wonder he was squirming.) Per standard policy, the officers arrested Stanton and started to inventory the vehicle in anticipation of the vehicle being towed.

Troopers initially discovered drug paraphernalia and an unlocked gun case in the rear seat containing a rifle with several rounds of ammunition. (It’s important to note that Stanton is prohibited from having a firearm because he is a previously convicted felon.)

At that point, the search was halted so the officers could apply for a search warrant. The next day, an in-depth search of the vehicle revealed Stanton’s wallet hidden in a compartment in the automobile along with 118 grams of heroin in the dashboard. (It just keeps getting worse, doesn’t it?) About four months later, Stanton found himself in even more trouble. (If there’s one thing fraudsters are good at, it’s causing trouble wherever they go.)

Stanton checked himself into a medical center in Bangor on July 24, 2019. (That’s the good news.) He fraudulently signed a consent to treatment form using another individual’s identity. (That’s the bad news.) This individual was a lawful recipient of Maine Care benefits. By illegally assuming his unfortunate victim’s identity, Stanton received care and generated medical bills that would be processed in his victim’s name.

Stanton now faces time in federal prison as well as the possibility of paying restitution to Maine Care. This drug trafficker’s sentencing is scheduled for March 19, 2021.

Today’s Fraud of the Day comes from a Department of Justice press release, “Maine Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Trafficking, Firearm, and Fraud Offenses,” dated January 29, 2021.

Richard Stanton, 34, of Hope, Maine pleaded guilty in federal court on Thursday to multiple charges, United States Attorney Scott W. Murray announced today.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on March 18, 2019, New Hampshire State Troopers stopped a vehicle with a defective taillight.  The driver, Stanton, was seen reaching under the front passenger seat as they approached.  Due to safety concerns, a trooper asked Stanton to exit and walk to the rear of the vehicle.  Stanton initially provided false information about his identity to the officers.  Officers later determined his actual identity.  He was arrested after officers determined that he had a suspended driver’s license and that he was the subject of outstanding warrants in Maine



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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.