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LIRR Not Taken For Ride

 State: NY


Prosecutors Obtain 23rd Guilty Plea in Long Island RR Fraud Scheme


A former conductor for the Long Island Railroad has pleaded guilty to a fraud charge, the 23rd former employee of the commuter rail line to plead guilty since federal prosecutors launched an investigation into a disability fraud scheme, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York announced.


Richard Ehrilinger, 66, of Bay Shore pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board. He will be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero on Sept. 6 and faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison.


Ehrilinger agreed to pay $32,000 in restitution to the Railroad Retirement Board, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.


Prosecutors say that hundreds of Long Island Railroad employees have exploited an overlap between the railroad's pension plan with the Railroad Retirement Board's disability program by planning the date on which they would falsely declare themselves disabled to coincide with their projected retirement date. This allowed the employees to retire as early as age 50 with a Long Island Rail Road pension supplemented by Railroad Retirement Board disability benefits.


Federal prosecutors have charged 32 employees in the disability fraud scheme.


Source: U.S. Attorney's Office

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