Webster Man Pleads Guilty to Government Theft

Defendant stole over $230,000 in Social Security retirement benefits

Courtesy U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts

BOSTON – David Brunell, 56, of Webster, pleaded guilty today in federal court in Worcester to one count of theft of government money. U.S. District Court Judge Timothy S. Hillman scheduled sentencing for Dec. 13, 2018.

Between June 2000 and June 2017, the Social Security Administration deposited approximately $234,000 in retirement benefits intended for Brunell’s father into a bank account controlled by Brunell after Brunell’s father had died. Brunell used the funds for various personal expenditures, such as mortgage payments.

Brunell faces a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling and Scott Antolik, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Abely of Lelling’s Worcester Branch Office is prosecuting the case.


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