BURLINGTON (AP) -- A man who stole the identity of a U.S. Army veteran to avoid registering as a sex offender was sentenced Thursday to 11 years in prison for a scheme that prosecutors said unraveled when he used the bogus identification to get medical care that was billed to the Department of Veterans Affairs.
David P. Oswald, 47, who had been convicted in 2005 of sexually assaulting a child in Washington state, lived in Vermont from 2006-2012 as Bobby Lee Triplett, a veteran from North Carolina, according to federal prosecutors.
Triplett’s car was stolen in Washington state with his military ID in it, authorities said. Prosecutors said Oswald subsequently obtained the identification and moved to Vermont, where he got a non-driver’s license photo identification card as Triplett and used it with other documents to get a passport.
Oswald also obtained a voter registration card, bought guns, joined the Vermont State Guard and got medical care as a veteran when he suffered a heart attack in 2011, authorities said.
Oswald obtained approximately $50,000 in cardiac care at Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, which was billed to the VA, prosecutors said.
At the time, Triplett was serving in the Middle East on his fourth deployment. After returning in 2012, he reported to the VA that he had never been to Vermont, which sparked the investigation, prosecutors said.
Oswald was arrested in September of 2012 in the Jonesville area of Richmond. Authorities found a loaded semi-automatic pistol in his car, as well as child pornography and other firearms in a camper where he had been staying, prosecutors said.
Oswald also must pay $50,000 in restitution to the VA and Fletcher Allen Health Care.