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Embezzling from Disabled Vets

Two Plead Guilty to Embezzling from Disabled Vets

Two former government employees have pleaded guilty in federal court in Memphis to conspiring to embezzle nearly $900,000 from veterans beneficiary accounts under their supervision.

Jack Perry, 75, and Robert Tabbutt, 67, admitted diverting funds from 10 different accounts and using the money to pay personal expenses and to gamble at Tunica casinos.

Perry had fiduciary duties over the accounts and Tabbutt is a former field examiner for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

If a veteran cannot handle his or her affairs, the VA usually will appoint a family member or, if necessary, ask the court to appoint one.

Federal prosecutor Justin Bailey said that between July 1999 and October 2008, the two men schemed to steal money from the beneficiary accounts of disabled veterans by writing checks to themselves from the accounts or withdrawing cash from the accounts.

They pleaded guilty to embezzling $896,239.43 on Tuesday before U.S. Dist. Court Judge S. Thomas Anderson. They will be sentenced Nov. 17.

"This prosecution has brought to justice these two men, who were illegally and shamefully taking benefits paid to disabled veterans for their own selfish gain," U.S. Atty. Ed Stanton of Memphis said in a news release.

"We will continue to work with the Department of Veterans' Affairs and other law enforcement partners to prosecute those who would abuse their positions of trust in order to prey on vulnerable members of our community, especially veterans."


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Disability System Leaves Troops in 'Vast Unknown'

Army Staff Sgt. Nicholas Lanier poses with his daughters, left to right, Sophia, Evy, Juliette and Hannah.

WASHINGTON -- Staff Sgt. Nicholas Lanier has entered what he calls the "vast unknown." A combat veteran and father to four daughters, he can't remain in the military because of a serious back injury earned in Iraq.

But he can't yet accept a civilian job because he doesn't know when the military will discharge him. He has no clue how much the government will pay him in disability compensation related to his injury, so he can't make a future budget. He just waits.

"I don't have any idea what the end stat is going to be on the other side. When you have a family and you are trying to plan for the future, that's going to affect a lot of things," said Lanier, a 37-year-old Soldier stationed at Fort Stewart, Ga., who walks with a limp because of related nerve damage. "The only known is that it takes time."

Thousands of troops are like Lanier: not fully fit to serve but in limbo for about two years waiting to get discharged under a new system that was supposed to be more efficient than its predecessor. And the delays are not only affecting servicemembers, but the military's readiness as well. New troops can't enlist until others are discharged.

The government determines the pay and benefits given to wounded, sick or injured troops for their military service. Under the old system, a medical board would determine their level of military compensation and the servicemember would be discharged. Then the veteran essentially would have to go through the process again with the Veterans Affairs Department to determine benefits. While they waited for their VA claim to be processed, many of the war wounded were going broke.



Under the new system, which started in 2007 and will be completely rolled out at military bases nationwide by the end of September, the servicemember essentially goes through both disability evaluation systems at the same time before leaving the military.

But the new, supposedly streamlined, system is still such a cumbersome process that it's leaving many servicemembers in limbo, they say. A typical servicemember's case is handed off between the Defense Department and the VA nine times during the new integrated process. It typically starts about a year after a servicemember is injured, after it's clear that remaining on duty isn't possible, with a goal of 295 days to complete after that initial year. However, the average completion time after the initial year is more than 400 days, leaving the servicemember in limbo more than two years.

Each snag in the process sets a servicemember back from knowing the extent of benefits and time of discharge from the military. Troops have had to turn down job offers and delay starting college because they don't know when they can leave military service. And it adds stress on an already vulnerable population. As their cases are processed, many live in the military's outpatient warrior transition units, where they can get extra support, while others do work for the military that they are physically capable of doing.

Marine Cpl. Todd Nicely, 27, was wounded by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan in March 2010 and had both arms and legs amputated. A piece of paper needing a signature as part of the disability evaluation process sat on a government official's desk for nearly 70 days until Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Patty Murray intervened, Nicely's wife, Crystal, told Murray's committee.

"The process of transitioning out of the military has been particularly difficult," Crystal Nicely said. "I understand it's supposed to be a faster, more efficient way to complete evaluations and transition out of the military service. That has not been our experience."

The new system has some benefits. Wounded servicemembers no longer face financial hardship as the VA claim is processed because they are still in the military and drawing military pay. Surveys show servicemembers feel the system is fairer than the old one, said Philip A. Burdette, the principal director at the Defense Department's Office of Wounded Warrior Care and Transition Policy. And for some, the extra time in the military gives them extra support.

The Army alone currently has more than 11,730 Guard, Reserve and active-duty Soldiers who are going through the new process, and more than a thousand Soldiers from the three components enter the new system each month faster than troops are completing it.

"We are growing significantly every month," said Army Maj. Gen. Gary H. Cheek, the outgoing director of military personnel management. "We really don't have an indication of when this will level off, and we are doing everything that we can, even at the four-star level, to try and improve this process and get it to a reasonable time frame."

Cheek said it's not good for the Army or for Soldiers living in limbo. After the initial year of care, he said, he'd like the military to make a simple determination if the servicemember is fit to serve. If not, he'd like to see the military accept the VA's rating and get out of the disability evaluation process all together, meaning the servicemember would receive one rating instead of two. His proposal would take about 90 days compared with the current 400, he said.


"For us, we just view it as the right thing to do. There should be a single rating for the Soldier. We shouldn't be giving them two ratings. We are confusing them with that. From the Army's standpoint, it's easier for us to say we think these costs are well spent. This is a fair way to do it," Cheek said. "All the effort we have to put into running this process, we could re-mission these resources into taking care of Soldiers that we are trying to deploy."

Cheek's proposal would require a law change, and it could potentially cost hundreds of millions of dollars more a year.

House Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller, R-Fla., said it's an option he's willing to consider because the system clearly has flaws.

"It's not ready to say it's time to do that, but we have to figure out a way to marry the two ratings systems in a way that doesn't cause a delay for the veteran in getting the care and the benefits," Miller said.



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No retirement at 20 years?

No More Retiring at 20 Years?

 

 

A sweeping new plan to overhaul the Pentagon’s retirement system would give some benefits to all troops and phase out the 20-year cliff vesting system that has defined military careers for generations, the Military Times newspapers reported.

The plan calls for a corporate-style benefits program that would contribute money to troops’ retirement savings account rather than the promise of a future monthly pension, according to a new proposal from an influential Pentagon advisory board.

The move would save the Pentagon money -- at a time when it's being asked to cut at least $400 billion -- and benefit troops who leave with less than 20 years of service.

The yearly contributions might amount to about 16.5 percent of a member’s annual pay and would be deposited into a mandatory version of the Thrift Savings Plan, the military’s existing 401(k)-style account that now does not include government matching contributions, according to the Times.

Proponents said the plan would allow more flexibility for servicemembers, who could decide how they want to invest their retirement savings, and for the military, which would be allowed to offer higher contributions to troops who deploy frequently or take hardship assignments.

The Military Times has more on the proposed overhaul, including a summary of how servicemembers would be affected, depending on their length of service.


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DD214 Secret Code

THE SECRET CODE ON VETERAN'S DD214



Spin Codes - Legal Action
By: Edwin Crosby


The author of this story, Edwin Crosby, served in the USAF from 1966-1971.  He volunteered to go to Vietnam, and served in MACVSOG, 15th Special Operations Squadron,  Nha Trang, AB,  RVN  from November 1968 to June 1970.  His lawsuit began in March of 1976, having discovered in February of 1976, he had a BAD 'Spin Code' number.  The case was originally filed in the US District Court, Northern District of New York, Syracuse.  He has been fighting this case on behalf of all veterans and has been instrumental in having D.O.D.  change the DD-214 many times to prevent future damage to other veterans.

Beginning JUNE 11, 1956, under D.O.D. Instruction 1336.3,  DOD ordered the military departments to begin putting a coded number on the main employment reference document of veterans. This document known as the DD-214 is intended to be presented to employers by veterans seeking employment and benefits.

According to Plaintiff's Exhibit NO: 6, D.O.D. Instruction 1336.1, dated September 1, 1966, SUBJECT - Standardization of Forms for Report of Transfer or Discharge of Members of the Armed Forces of the U.S., there were to be 8 or more copies of DD-214 made.  Copy one to the veteran, other copies eventually went to State Adjutant General, VA Data Processing Center, Austin, TX.,  State Director Selective Service, Nat. Military Records Center, St. Louis, Mo.

As of 1977, nearly 20 million veterans had a coded number. This is SHOCKING as in 1974  D.O.D. told Congress that only a couple hundred thousand had a code number.  Moreover, in 1974  DOD told Congress they would stop the " SPN "  coding system, however, in 1972, they were already changing the system to " SPD "  ( separation program designator ).  They deceived Congress and the American People.  Millions of veterans with an Honorable Discharge have a " BAD "  coded number.

Plaintiff's Exhibit NO: 19  is the " infamous corporation questionnaire ". These are major corporations admitting to having the codes and using them against veterans.  I am the only one to have this due to litigation, as it is locked up in Congress under a " Classified "  coding.  Banks, life insurance companies, State Gov't & Federal Gov't Agencies have them as well.  Lists of the codes were sent to FAA, ( federal aviation admin. )  HUD, ( housing & urban development )  Office Personnel Management.

One corporation admitted that the VA has told us this is not confidential and they will send us a copy.  Amazing!

There are Congressional Records available to read on this matter. As Congress attempted once to pass a law regarding the use of the coded numbers, however, this failed to pass.

Have you ever gone to a VA Hospital and had the doctor attempt to send you to the psychologist or psychiatrist ??  Your coded SPN was probably the reason why, and you did not even know, moreover, there could be nothing in your military records saying you had seen a psychologist, but, that did not stop them.  One of the most given out codes was SPN-265 or SDN-265, which says,  unsuitability, character & behavior disorders.

There were 5 main categories;  unsuitability,  unfitness,  misconduct, homosexual, or, any reason based upon mental or moral issues.  Then under each category, they piled on a bunch of numbers and meanings.  i.e.  SPN-384,  Drug Abuse, Marijuana or Heroin.  And get this, those veterans who signed up for  " DRUG AMNESTY "  you got a code number, SPN-384,   YOU GOT NO AMNESTY !!!  You got screwed.

Here are some things I have discovered over the years:  (1)  the State of N.Y. denied me the right to take a Civil Service Test because the State Employee punched my SSN into a computer and pulled up my military records  ( they are not supposed to have them )  then said there is your code, sorry, NO TEST.  It was the very same code number the Gov't said in Court would never surface again, they corrected the records, RIGHT, they did nothing.   (2)   VA'S  Board of Veterans Appeals sent a 500 page transcript regarding my 19 year old claim for disability over to the U.S. Court of Veterans Appeals, on page 63, there was the same DD-214  the Gov't said would never surface again,  RIGHT, they did nothing.  Have you had trouble getting benefits with VA ?  Try this on for size,  someone else has your claim number, a phony or ghost, and they get your money !   (3)  VA employee tells me someone else has same number as you, that's impossible, or,  is it ??   (4)  a U.S. Senators aid here in Montana tells me this doesn't exist, it is a rumor,  yep, sure, then I say, I am the one who took lawsuit to US Supreme Court, well now, all of a sudden its no longer a rumor, and does exist.

I have lived in Upstate NY,  Missouri for 8 months,  Illinois for 16 months, and now Montana 9 months.  Everywhere I go, I speak to veterans, or, meet with them to tell them what is going on.  On Sept. 29, 2001,  I attended a " Veterans Standdown "  here in Billings.  I set up a table, and 7 vets came by with their DD-214 ( others did, but did not have DD-214 with them ).   Vet NO: 7 had a code I never saw before, advised him to write to service branch he was in and ask, the other 6 veterans had an HONORABLE DISCHARGE,  and  ALL had a rotten coded number.  What was alarming was all 6 said there was nothing in their military records to indicate they should have had that code.  They were stabbed in the back.

In 1984, I submitted a PROPOSAL to the VA under PUBLIC LAW  98-160, National Needs Assessment of Vietnam Veterans.  I had the support of the National Council of Churches, and the N.Y. State Council of Churches.  I won that GRANT !  My Grant called for " CHAPLAINS "  not psychologists who are lying to veterans about this PTSD stuff, when the coded SPN, SDN, or SPD code is responsible for many, many problems.  The White House took it away.  The Church folks got on a plane and lit out for Washington. Some deal was struck, think it was Veterans Outreach Centers, whatever.

You must find out what your coded number is, remember, if you were discharged before 1974, you automatically have one, after 1974, it went on the other 8 or more copies of DD-214, and your still dead meat.

What angers me most is the American Legion & V.F.W.   They remain silent on this matter.  I was a service officer for Am. Leg. in N.Y.  I actually got fired for helping veterans and widows win their benefits.  I file a claim, and they had to reinstate me.  I resigned 2 months later, having been cut off from those items I need to help veterans with.

Here is my email address; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions, want to see copies of these documents, give me a FAX number, will send them to you, with your promise to show them to other veterans, or help a vet with one of these codes.

Currently,  I am reopening this lawsuit here in Billings, Mt.  The Judge should make some sort of Decision by the end of April, at least I hope he does.  The smoking gun is there, however, the corruption within our Justice System is outrageous.  I sent a criminal complaint to the FOREMAN of the Federal Grand Jury here on March 1st, 2002.  The US Attorney intercepted it.  Charges,  GENOCIDE & WAR CRIMES,  both under TITLE 18, PART 1, CHAPTER 50A, SECTION 1091,  and,  TITLE 18, PART 1, CHAPTER 118, SECTION 2441.   Those of us who have these codes fall directly under the wording of these 2 sections of law.  We are being systematically eliminated because thieves want to rip off the VA for billions of dollars.  Well, screw them.

For those veterans who do not like to be stabbed in the back, and you are looking for a way to fight back,  there is the BOARD FOR CORRECTION OF MILITARY RECORDS.  It requires one piece of paper, a Gov't Form, and a very good statement of case.  That is to say,  on my DD-214 is a coded number, there is nothing in my records saying I did what the code says, you have blacklisted me, stabbed me in the back, character assassinated my good family name.  Under TITLE 10, Section 1552,  you are entitled to be paid for an " injustice ".   That is what you are claiming.  I would look on an internet library such as Cornell Univ. and make copy of that law: http://www.law.cornell.edu

Do not be afraid to get some help, however, be careful as any vet rep may try to talk you out of it.  You have been stabbed in the back,  make sure you get some Justice.

Edwin Crosby III
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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UPDATE - November 2, 2002

By Edwin Crosby  III

As of this date,  November 2, 2002,  Mr. Crosby has file the last BRIEF/REBUTTAL with the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.  Mr. Crosby is trying to reopen the SPN, SDN, SPD coded number lawsuit he took to the U.S. Supreme Court.   A U.S. Federal Judge in Billings, Mt. denied his request to vacate or set aside the original Decision based on SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY.  This is incorrect under 28 U.S.C. 1331.

Moreover,  the U.S.A.F. and the Gov't lawyers now claim they DID NOT have to obey the two (2) U.S. Federal Court Orders issued to them as the Judge did not list each and every DD-214 the Government generated,  nor,  list each and every electronic data bank  ( computers )   this coded number was sent to, including State & Federal Government Agencies.   Is that lame or what ??!!!!    Twice Federal Judges said to correct ALL the RECORDS,  now they use a lame excuse like that.  Hopefully, other Judges will not buy that theory.

Should the 9th Circuit Court refuse to do anything about this sordid matter of branding human beings with coded numbers for the purpose of systematic elimination,  veteran Crosby is going to Canada and request political asylum based on GENOCIDE.   Currently under  U.S. law,  TITLE 18, Part 1, Chapter 50A, Section 1091, GENOCIDE,  veteran Crosby and any other veteran in the Untied States with one of these coded numbers falls under this law as a victim.  Moreover,  Title 18, Part 1, Chapter 118, Section 2441,  WAR CRIMES,  veteran Crosby and any other veteran with one of these codes also falls under this section of law as a victim.

Once the international community sees the proof of this branding of human beings with numbers in America,  only one thought will be forthcoming,  this is what happened in Nazi Germany,  now its going on in America.   Who is responsible for this Holocaust 2,  look no further than the Justice System, controlled by a secret society, the BAR ASSOCIATION and its members, LAWYERS.   The framers of the U.S. Constitution left the word lawyer out of the Constitution and for good reason.  NOW we see that reason, decades of systematic elimination by a corrupt justice system.

It is shameful that State Veteran Agencies have not told veterans about this coded number,  even more shameful is the theft of monies from the Veterans Administration via the use of the coded number.  Brother veterans,  thieves are criminals,  and have NO HONOR.  If more of you sought legal redress for this outrageous conduct towards Americas Veterans,  something wonderful would happen.  Liberty & Justice For All would become reality.  Pledging allegiance to the flag ends with the words,  with Liberty & Justice For All,  and many have died upon the battlefield for just that.  Will you Honor those who died by telling other veterans about this sordid matter?   Will you write a letter to these so called veterans service organizations and ask them why they keep their mouths shut on this matter ??

Legally,  this is the last opportunity before the world knows about this.  Sites like this one have given you an opportunity to learn about what has been done to you and other veterans, and thankfully, there are sites like this one.

Edwin Crosby  III
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">

UPDATE  - OCTOBER 17,  2006

Ed Crosby filed a complaint with the V.A. Inspector General regarding a matter about FROSTBITE.  The V.A. Inspector General investigated this phony claim and said,  "...the erroneous claim for frostbite was removed from Mr. Crosby's file as he did not open such a claim ".   VA Regional Office Manager at Ft. Harrison, Mt. , filed this FALSE CLAIM by forging Mr. Crosby's signature upon official Gov't documents designed to CHARACTER ASSASSINATE a litigant.  Moreover,  it was also discovered that the MAIN PIECE OF EVIDENCE in the lawsuit,  a legal transcript submitted to any Federal Court Clerk,  had been removed from the Official File and destroyed.  THEREFORE,  with the evidence destroyed,  the Courts had no choice but to say,  no subject matter jurisdiction.  Criminal complaints have been filed with FBI,  nothing done to date.   Lastly,  someone in the US Attorneys Office in BILLINGS, Mt.  called Ft. Harrison Regional Office and told them to destroy the transcript and open a phony claim to discredit Mr. Crosby.   V.A.  moved one William Peterson,  Regional Office Manager, Ft. Harrison, Mt.  to a Regional Office in Kentucky.  Can you believe it,  he was not arrested !!!!   We have the evidence,  where is our Judicial System ?????

Edwin H. Crosby  III


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VMW President's Op-Ed

Give troops equipment they need to stay safe

July 22, 2011

By Joseph F. Morgan

As Congress begins a budget-cutting spree, constituencies and special interest groups across the country are speaking up in a last-ditch effort to protect federal funding for their pet priorities, whether it's creating jobs, providing health care or improving the environment.

Strangely, our troops fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq are probably the most voiceless constituency in the current debate, even though they have the most to lose. Unlike veterans, whose political organizations protect our medical and education benefits, active-duty troops are discouraged from becoming politically active and encouraged to respect the chain of command.

Members of both political parties have proposed drastic and haphazard defense cuts in an effort to reduce the deficit. Just as delays in the delivery of body armor and armored vehicles to Iraq in 2004 led to avoidable deaths and injuries for thousands of men and women in uniform in roadside bomb blasts, it's fair to expect that ill-advised cuts to critical troop equipment today will result in casualties tomorrow.

Florida families should care deeply about this. According to the Defense Manpower Data Center's latest figures, more than 22,000 Floridians are currently deployed to combat operations in places like Afghanistan and Iraq. Only Texas has sent more troops into combat.

These Floridians serving abroad need two new Pentagon programs that are potentially on the chopping block and could help save many soldiers' lives — one through improved armor and the other through next-generation technology.

The Army has been trying for years to replace its hodgepodge of tanks and troop-transport vehicles with a new fleet of armored combat vehicles that can handle any mission. Our Cold War-era tanks are too heavy to effectively engage in the kind of precise, tactical assignments our soldiers complete every day in Iraqi cities and Afghan villages. Meanwhile, the newer mine-resistant, ambush-protected troop-transport vehicles offer protection against roadside bombs but don't have the firepower, speed or troop capacity to serve as effective combat vehicles.

Our soldiers need vehicles that can protect them from bomb blasts while meeting the combat requirements for missions ranging from humanitarian aid to full-scale warfare. The Army is about to announce a decision for new ground-combat vehicles that would meet those requirements. However, if Congress slashes the Pentagon's budget, Pentagon brass will have little choice but to cut the funding for these new vehicles, endangering our soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Congress should also be improving Army intelligence technologies so soldiers can uncover deadly ambushes before they happen. The Army's Brigade Combat Team Modernization program (BCTM) would outfit each platoon with a combat-ready wireless network capable of transmitting text messages, satellite maps and other images, and streaming video and other types of media, all at broadband speeds.

If you watch action movies or TV shows like "24," you would think that our soldiers had this kind of technology years ago. Instead, our soldiers still use paper maps, hand signals and walkie-talkies. They still fight wars much like we did in Vietnam and Korea — patrol until the enemy shoots at you, and then shoot back.

The BCTM technologies would give our soldiers in Afghanistan a significant advantage against insurgents, allowing them to use remote-controlled robots to find insurgents hiding in buildings and bombs placed under cars before entering a town and putting soldiers' lives at risk. Combat veterans who have tested these capabilities have said they would make a real difference in places like Afghanistan and Iraq.

Yet Congress has already voted to scale back BCTM technologies. Additional cuts to the defense budget would further threaten these life-saving capabilities.

More than 22,000 Floridians answered the call of Congress by serving in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. Congress should now answer the call to provide them with essential equipment. While there is bipartisan support for reducing the deficit, voters will not support doing so at the expense of soldier safety.

America should never choose to spill the blood of its sons and daughters abroad in order to store up its treasure at home.

Link to article here: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/opinion/os-ed-military-funding-072211-20110721,0,5601469.story

Joseph F. Morgan of Apopka is president and CEO of the Veterans of Modern Warfare.

 


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