January 6th, 2012|
A former Social Security employee was sentenced to six months of house arrest for selling Social Security numbers to a undercover federal agent, reports the Knoxville News Sentinel.
Selling Social Security numbers is a felony conviction.
A U.S. District federal judge also ordered the 57-year-old man to be under a three-year supervision by federal probation officers as punishment for his confession to fraud.
“The Social Security Administration is a critical infrastructure because it involves the national security of our country,” the federal judge said. “Certainly the offense the defendant stands convicted of is a serious offense.”
The defendant is retired from the Air force after a 20-year career and had worked for the Social Security Administration for 10 years.
The federal agency set up a sting operation in which an agent posed as a Florida business man who wanted to pay the defendant to procure Social Security numbers. In October and November 2010, the defendant sold three Social Security numbers for $100 each.
The defendant faced a maximum of a year in federal prison. After considering Booth’s military service and otherwise spotless criminal history, the judge opted for home detention.
Since the judge calls the selling of Social Security numbers “a serious offense,” why do you think that the defendant only got “house arrest” and probation?