BALTIMORE, Md. (WJZ) – An Oakland, Md. man pleaded guilty Thursday to theft of government property by falsely stating a disability in an effort to collect SSA disability benefits for almost five years.

William Eugene Simms, 62, applied for disability benefits in July 2009, claiming that he was unable to work due to a back injury, according to his plea agreement.

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In April 2010, Simms began working at am automobile salvage business and did not report this return to work to the SSA.

In August 2010, Simms began receiving SSA disability benefits and stopped working for a few months.

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Within three months, the automobile salvage business rehired Simms, and he began working full time moving aluminum bales.  Authorities say the business paid Simms in cash to conceal his work from the SSA.  Simms also worked odd jobs elsewhere, including scrapping metal.

Simms did not report his return to work to SSA and received $60,890 of fraudulent disability benefits from August 2010 to March 2015.

He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. He will be sentenced the morning of Sept. 15, 2015.

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