- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 15, 2017

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a northeast Florida man will serve 18 months in federal prison after he pleaded guilty to stealing near a quarter million dollars in government benefits.

U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III says 57-year-old Robert Lee Lanier of Jacksonville started receiving Social Security disability and Medicare benefits in 1995 after he said he was unable to work.

But federal investigators found that Lanier was actually operating a handyman’s business while receiving the benefits. They say he was building fences, doing home repairs and other work, and boasted he had “made millions” running the business.

At the same time, Lanier received more than $155,000 from the Social Security Administration and more than $81,000 from Medicare over the past eight years.

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