The Worst of Intentions


Some people can have the best of intentions. For instance, you might remember a month in advance that your spouse’s birthday is coming up. You may have the best intention of making fine dining reservations, booking a babysitter and wrapping a special gift. Then an important project comes up at work and after becoming immersed in deadlines and presentations, you forget about the birthday. (You can have the best intentions to do the right thing and fail, but it is the thought that counts, right?) An article in The Dallas Morning News tells about a man who definitely had intentions when he applied for financial aid, but they were not good intentions.

The story states that a 35-year-old man used the Social Security numbers, birthdates and photo ID’s of several family members to apply for financial aid from two local community colleges. He was able to collect more than $25,000 in financial aid through the scheme.

The man, who was already serving a pre-release sentence before reporting to prison to serve three years and 10 months for stealing government property, was sentenced to an additional two years in federal prison. (He hadn’t even made it to prison to serve out his first term before committing the next crime.) He was also ordered to pay $22,442 in restitution for his crime after pleading guilty to one count of financial aid fraud.

This criminal never had any intention to use the money he fraudulently obtained to attend college. Legal documents regarding this case show that the man used the illegally gained funds for ”improper non-education purposes.” This guy’s actions speak louder than words and imply bad intentions. He deliberately planned to scam the financial aid system, but he probably had not considered what would happen after being caught and prosecuted. (I’m sure the prison system also has the best intentions of making this man pay for his illegal acts.)

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled ”Dallas Man Sentenced for Committing Financial Aid Fraud at Local Community Colleges” published by The Dallas Morning News on June 19, 2014.

A Dallas man was sentenced Thursday for using his family members’ personal information to apply for community colleges admission and pocket financial aid dollars.

Desmond Ladell Johnson, 35, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle to two years in federal prison and ordered to pay $22,442 in restitution. He pleaded guilty in October 2013 to one count of financial aid fraud. He will have to surrender to the Bureau of Prisons in August 2014.

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Larry Benson is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances for Revenue Discovery and Recovery at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. In this role, Benson is responsible for developing partnerships for the tax and revenue and child support enforcement verticals. He focuses on embedded companies that have a need for third-party analytics to enhance their current offerings.