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Massena man gets probation for stealing $12,465 from U.S. Coast Guard

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MASSENA — A former member of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary has been sentenced to five years’ federal probation for filing false mileage reimbursement claims with the agency.

Patrick M. O’Brien, 36, was also ordered Friday in U.S. District Court, Utica, to serve the first five months of his supervision on home detention under electronic monitoring, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. He was further ordered to pay $12,465 in restitution to the Coast Guard and perform 100 hours of community service.

Mr. O’Brien pleaded guilty in February to a one-count indictment charging him with theft of government properties. He admitted that between October 2006 and March 2007, while a member of the auxiliary, he improperly received mileage reimbursement to which he was not entitled by submitting false vouchers to the Coast Guard claiming he had conducted 75 shore patrols along the St. Lawrence River, totaling 28,013 miles, when he had not.

Following discovery of his misconduct, an investigation was conducted by the Coast Guard’s Investigative Service, Resident Agent Office, Buffalo.

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