Find out how to register, vote early, research a candidate and more in AARP's midterm election guide.
by Michelle Diament, AARP Bulletin, - December 24, 2008
Dean Toth, 37, has normal hearing levels, according to four different government-administered tests. Yet somehow the former Marine pilot qualified for 100 percent disability from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) because of hearing loss.
Toth, of Crestwood, Ky., is one of 13 veterans named in a federal indictment released in Kentucky in November claiming fraud against the VA.
At the center of the alleged scheme are Daniel Parker, 37, also of Crestwood, who worked for Disabled American Veterans, and Jeffrey McGill, 37, of LaGrange, Ky., a VA employee responsible for reviewing disability claims. The charges allege that Parker and McGill got friends and family members who are military veterans to submit false disability claims. The charges also allege that the two altered or falsified medical documents to back up the applications.
The payout for the alleged fraud was huge—nearly $1.9 million. According to court documents, Toth alone received $93,240 in back payment for disability claims from the time of his initial application in 2004, and a $2,500 monthly check from the VA for life. All the while, he continued to work as a pilot for Southwest Airlines.
Meanwhile, Parker and McGill got kickbacks of up to $60,000 for each case from the veterans they assisted in the scam, according to the indictment
“It was a total shock to us,” says Chris Clay, general counsel for Disabled American Veterans. Parker worked for the organization for more than a decade but was terminated when the investigation came to light last spring.
“I have been around Disabled American Veterans since 1986, and this is the first time I have seen anything like this. This is not an everyday occurrence,” Clay says.
Neither Parker nor McGill has entered pleas in the case yet, and attorneys for the two did not return phone calls requesting comment.
Michelle Diament is a writer in Memphis, Tenn.
Please leave your comment below.
You must be logged in to leave a comment.
Members can print free coupons at the Grocery Coupon Center powered by Coupons.com.
Members save 25% on purchases of $200+ and get free basic lenses or 25% off lens upgrades.
Members save 10% on their check every day.
AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.
You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits.
Your email address is now confirmed.
Manage your email preferences and tell us which topics interest you so that we can prioritize the information you receive.
Explore all that AARP has to offer.
In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails
related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly
receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free
to search for ways to make a difference in your community at