Man who spent more than $300K of a disabled veteran’s benefits sentenced to 19 months in federal prison

HARRISBURG — A Thompsontown man who spent $316,360 of a disabled veteran’s VA and Social Security benefits after becoming the veteran’s VA Fiduciary and Legal Custodian in 2006 was sentenced Monday to 19 months in federal prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of PA.

Jason Ehrhart, 48, also must pay that total in restitution to his nephew (the veteran’s son). The veteran died at the VA Hospital in Lebanon in July 2018.

Between October 2006 and August 2016, Ehrhart made the checks payable to his children in which he instructed them to cash the checks and surrender it to him. He also wrote $19,890 in checks to another couple and treated them and their children to dinners out and at least two, all-expense paid vacations to Disney World as well as the purchase of two new vehicles for the family and payments toward the wife’s dental work, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Ehrhart submitted eight false annual accountings to the VA to conceal the embezzlement.

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