Former Air Traffic Controller Convicted of Lying to Federal Workers’ Compensation Program

ALEXANDRIA, VA—Raymond Elmo Deskins, III, 52, of Potomac Falls, Va., a former air traffic controller who has received nearly $700,000 in federal workers’ compensation benefits, was convicted on Friday afternoon by a federal jury on mail fraud and false statements charges for his failure to disclose work activities in the construction industry to the Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs.

Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Michael Barcus, Special Agent in Charge for the Department of Labor Office of Inspector General’s Washington Regional Office, made the announcement. The verdict was accepted by United States District Judge Liam O’Grady on Jan. 13, 2012.

Deskins faces a maximum penalty of 20 years on each mail fraud count and a maximum of five years on each false statements count when he is sentenced on May 4, 2012.

Deskins was indicted on Aug. 25, 2011, on nine counts of mail fraud and three counts of making false statements in connection with the receipt of federal workers’ compensation benefits. According to court records and evidence at trial, Deskins, formerly an air traffic control specialist at the Washington Air Route Traffic Control Center in Leesburg, has received nearly $700,000 in benefits from the federal workers’ compensation program since 2004.

From 2005 through 2008, while receiving disability benefits based on his inability to perform any work of any kind, Deskins worked as a construction foreman for a Sterling-based general contractor. In order to keep his monthly benefits checks coming, Deskins repeatedly falsely certified to the Department of Labor on annual forms that he had been engaged in no work activities during the reporting periods.

This case was investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General. Assistant United States Attorneys Paul J. Nathanson and Kosta S. Stojilkovic are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/vae. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.uspci.uscourts.gov.

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