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Retired Cop Stole $130K+ in Kids’ SS Benefits

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The Social Security Administration had been paying benefits to Conway on his children’s behalf since 2009.

By Forum Staff A retired City Police Department lieutenant living in Long Island City has been arrested for allegedly stealing more than $130,000 from the Social Security Administration that was intended for his two minor children, federal prosecutors recently announced. Michael Conway, 60, was arraigned last Wednesday on a complaint charging him with wire fraud. He was released on $200,000 bond. According to the complaint, Conway began receiving Retirement, Survivors and Disability Insurance benefits from the SSA in May 2009 for a work-related injury he suffered while employed by the NYPD. Eligible family members may also receive RSDI benefits, or auxiliary benefits. In August 2009, Conway applied for auxiliary benefits on behalf of his twin children,

who were 8 years old at the time. Conway falsely claimed that his children resided with him in Queens and that no other relatives provided financial support for the children. Based on the false information provided by Conway, the SSA approved the application and granted Conway’s request to receive and manage the SSA funds to which his children were entitled. Conway’s fraud was uncovered when his son, upon applying to the SSA for benefits, learned that SSA had been paying benefits to Conway on his children’s behalf since 2009 and that Conway had received a total of $138,016.60. The twins’ mother informed the SSA that she was awarded custody of the children in December 2002 and they had never lived with Conway. If convicted, Conway faces a statutory maximum of 20 years’ imprisonment and restitution.

New Marijuana Use Laws now in Effect

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The new laws will make marijuana enforcement fairer and more equitable, Gov. Cuomo said.

By Michael V. Cusenza New State laws further decriminalizing marijuana use are now in effect. The measures officially went on the books on Wednesday, Aug. 28. According to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who signed the legislation in July, the new laws will make marijuana enforcement fairer and more equitable by: reducing the penalty for unlawful possession of marijuana to a violation

punishable by a fine and removing criminal penalties for possession of any amount of marijuana under two ounces; and creating a process for individuals with certain marijuana convictions to have their records expunged both retroactively and for future convictions. The governor said the new laws will go a long way “in addressing a broken and discriminatory criminal justice process.” “For too long communities of color have been disproportionately impacted by laws governing marijuana and have suffered the life-long consequences of an unfair marijuana conviction. Today is the start of a new chapter in the criminal justice system. By providing individuals a path to have their records expunged, including those who have been unjustly impacted based on their race or ethnicity, and reducing the penalty for unlawful possession of marijuana to a fine, we are giving many New Yorkers the opportunity to live better and more productive, successful and healthier lives,” Cuomo added. “This law is long overdue, and it is a significant step forward in our efforts to end this repressive cycle and ultimately mend our discriminatory criminal justice process once and for all.”

12 SEPTEMBER 5, 2019 • Number 36 VOL. 19 • THE FORUM NEWSGROUP

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