Man claimed wife was truck driver so he could keep disability payments

Texarkana Federal Courthouse

A man who falsely claimed his wife was earning money as a truck driver so he could continue receiving federal disability benefits pleaded guilty to theft of government property in a Texarkana federal court.

Thomas Joe Green began receiving disability in 2009, according to documents filed in the Texarkana Division of the Eastern District of Texas. Green continued to accept the benefits and did not inform officials with Social Security that he began work as a truck driver between January 2015 and October 2017.

Instead, Green and his wife amended their tax returns for 2015 and 2016 to falsely claim it was Green’s wife who was earning the income he made as a truck driver. Green’s wife does not have a commercial driver’s license.

According to court records, Green pocketed $58,000 in benefits. A factual basis filed at the time of Green’s plea Jan. 13 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Caroline Craven indicates the government is seeking a judgment of $20,000.

Green is currently free on a $5,000 unsecured appearance bond set by Craven in the Texarkana Division of the Eastern District of Texas. A date for sentencing has not been set.

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