Recent Swamp-draining efforts inside the Beltway have hit the US Department of Veterans' Affairs yet again. Last Summer, over a hundred VA employees were arrested for stealing Opioids and selling them on the Black Market. The level of thefts was so high that authorities discovered it when veterans legitimately prescribed the drugs couldn't get prescriptions filled because the supplies had run out.
In 2007, the VA appointed Glenn Pearson---a Massachusetts police sergeant---as a Fiduciary for disabled veterans. Pearson also ran a tax preparation firm and acted in this capacity for eight veterans. In some cases, Fiduciaries are appointed for persons unable to manage their finances.
The IRS and FBI have jointly charged Pearson with robbing these veterans of nearly $250,000. Under the VA program, Pearson set up trusts for these clients, but took VA funds for himself illegally by fraudulently assigning them to other expenses. The IRS discovered the crime during an audit of Pearson's company also revealed that he was taking bribes to prepare false tax returns for customers.
Might we suggest that the VA has a definite problem in screening the people whom they put in positions of authority? This is a Swamp which really needs drained. And another Swamp Rat got taken in the VA this week as well.
Russell Ware, a VA official, was taken into custody after being caught diverting veterans' benefits into his own bank account. Investigations revealed that Ware also had accomplices to whom he sent veterans' benefits (although they weren't veterans at all) who sent Ware a kickback for the thefts.
Last and arguably least: Secret Service Special Agent Shaun Bridges was jailed for money laundering in connection with Operation Silk Road, an Obama-Era sting operation targeting Black Market activities online. This was the sting that caught California gangster "Dread Pirate" Roberts. As part of the sting, the Secret Service set up a Bitcoin account as a front. Bridges was in charge of that account, but siphoned off over $10 million for himself and tried to throw the blame on Roberts. It didn't work, though, and Bridges will be joining Roberts in the Federal Pen---for the next 8 years, anyway.
Over the last several years, Americans have lost confidence in their government; and that is because of government employees and contractors like the ones above. One of the most important contributions of the Trump Administration is making government work again---and work for the people instead of for the Deep State.