A former Postal Service employee convicted of defrauding the government of $68,000 in workers’ compensation benefits was sentenced Thursday in federal court to time served of 15 months.
Although a jury convicted Bonnie Margaret Schreiber, 58, of Checkerboard, of fraud charges in October 2008, Chief U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull continued sentencing after finding that Schreiber was suffering from a mental disease. He ordered Schreiber committed to a federal hospital for treatment until officials determined she had recovered.
Schreiber was recently released from the hospital and appeared in court for sentencing.
Cebull ordered time served of 15 months, followed by three years of supervised release. He also imposed $68,729 restitution.
Schreiber has disabling physical and mental conditions, Cebull said.
Schreiber told the court her parents taught her to tell the truth.
“I’ve been a law-abiding citizen all 58 years of my life,’’ she said. “Why people have to lie to get ahead is a mystery to me.’’
Defense attorney Jack Sands asked for minimal sentence, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Archer did not object to a sentence of time served.
A jury convicted Schreiber of two counts of mail fraud, wire fraud and theft of government property.
Archer said Schreiber lived an active, outdoors life even though she claimed she could not bend straight-legged, not work for more than a half-hour and was unable to bend over to perform routine activity.
The prosecution evidence included undercover surveillance video from 2006 of Schreiber loading and unloading firewood offered to her by undercover agents. Agents also taped Schreiber moving long logs and large garbage cans, carrying 32-pound cinder blocks, driving a tractor and running a chain saw around her rural home near Martinsdale.
Schreiber denied the charges and testified there had been no change in her condition, which she said left her totally disabled and unable to do any work.