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Ex-Politician Nuristani Pleads Guilty of SSI Fraud in US Court

A former Afghan politician, Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani, pled guilty in a US federal court on December 11 to “theft of public money,” admitting that he received over $100,000 in government benefits by concealing foreign travel and residency between July 2015 and December 2018, according to a statement by the US Department of Justice.

According to the statement, Nuristani admitted that he applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from the Social Security Administration in July 2015.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a United States program that provides cash assistance to individuals residing in the United States who are either aged 65 or older, blind, or disabled.

Nuristani admitted to concealing and repeatedly lying to the Social Security Administration about his foreign travel and residency, and to receiving $27,492.44 in SSI payments and to “causing a loss of $73,090.34 to the State of California for health care payments and services as a result of his fraud,” the statement added.

Nuristani served as both the head of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission and as an Afghan senator even as he received SSI at his claimed address in El Cajon, California, the US statement said.  He has also served as the governor of the western province of Herat and he was appointed as a member of the Meshrano Jirga, Afghanistan’s senate, in September 2018.

As a part of his plea agreement, Nuristani has agreed to make full restitution to the Social Security Administration and the California Department of Health Care Services, the statement said.  He also faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000 at his sentencing on March 9, 2020.

According to the statement, Nuristani, 71,” is a former Fulbright Scholar and has been a prominent politician in Afghanistan for many decades.”

Nuristani was head of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission from August 2013 to March 2016 and was heading the election commission during the controversial 2014 presidential polls which ended up with the shared National Unity Government.

“Those who abuse the trust of the taxpayer will be brought to justice,” said United States Attorney Robert S. Brewer, Jr.

Ex-Politician Nuristani Pleads Guilty of SSI Fraud in US Court

Under the US law, Nuristani faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000. 

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A former Afghan politician, Ahmad Yusuf Nuristani, pled guilty in a US federal court on December 11 to “theft of public money,” admitting that he received over $100,000 in government benefits by concealing foreign travel and residency between July 2015 and December 2018, according to a statement by the US Department of Justice.

According to the statement, Nuristani admitted that he applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from the Social Security Administration in July 2015.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a United States program that provides cash assistance to individuals residing in the United States who are either aged 65 or older, blind, or disabled.

Nuristani admitted to concealing and repeatedly lying to the Social Security Administration about his foreign travel and residency, and to receiving $27,492.44 in SSI payments and to “causing a loss of $73,090.34 to the State of California for health care payments and services as a result of his fraud,” the statement added.

Nuristani served as both the head of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission and as an Afghan senator even as he received SSI at his claimed address in El Cajon, California, the US statement said.  He has also served as the governor of the western province of Herat and he was appointed as a member of the Meshrano Jirga, Afghanistan’s senate, in September 2018.

As a part of his plea agreement, Nuristani has agreed to make full restitution to the Social Security Administration and the California Department of Health Care Services, the statement said.  He also faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000 at his sentencing on March 9, 2020.

According to the statement, Nuristani, 71,” is a former Fulbright Scholar and has been a prominent politician in Afghanistan for many decades.”

Nuristani was head of Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission from August 2013 to March 2016 and was heading the election commission during the controversial 2014 presidential polls which ended up with the shared National Unity Government.

“Those who abuse the trust of the taxpayer will be brought to justice,” said United States Attorney Robert S. Brewer, Jr.

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