A Wisconsin man who lied about being a Navy Seal and even produced fake documents to appear legitimate – was sentenced to four years in prison for his deception.
Kenneth E. Jozwiak, 68, claimed he was a highly decorated Vietnam War veteran who is a four time recipient of the Purple Heart and a Navy Seal, authorities said. His lies about the line to the criminal when he falsified service records to receive retirement benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, according to the Ministry of Justice.
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“This defendant’s lies about his service are an insult to those who saw combat and those injured fighting in the name of our nation,” said David A. Sierleja, acting Prosecutor of the V. S. for the Northern District of Ohio.
Jozwiak was sentenced late last week after pleading guilty to unlawfully displaying a military discharge certificate, and theft of government money, among other federal charges.
According to the u.s. department of justice, Jozwiak received $2,289 of the Department of Veterans Affairs, from August to December 2014, after lying about his military service. After he was caught, authorities say, he lied to federal agents about his military service.
“The falsification of service records to defraud taxpayers and plagiarism of other veterans valorous service will not be tolerated,” said Gavin McClaren, resident agent in charge of the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General, Cleveland office.
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Jozwiak, who had served in the army from 1967 to 1968 and was never stationed overseas, was described as a serial game with a long rap sheet. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, he had been arrested 120 times in multiple states dating back to 1975. He was convicted for theft “literally dozens and dozens” of times, Assistant district Attorney of the V. S. David Toepfer told the Union-Tribune.
“He was very public in how he did it,” Toepfer said. “He went as far as a child to a primary school and representing himself as a Navy SEAL in there and if receiving all of these awards.”