Man gets VA benefits by posing as dead veteran

Posted at 5:18 PM, May 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-26 09:45:50-04

An undocumented immigrant has been using the identity of a dead man for the past four years to get benefits of nearly $30,000.

Court records show that the 69-year-old man took the identity of man deceased since 1994 to get social security, VA and other Federal, state and local benefits since 2012. 

Police report that Rene Ortiz Quintana has been in the United States illegally for about 50 years. They say that in October of 2012 he took the identity of Ruben J. Gallardo, a man who has been dead since 1994.

Under that name, police say, he got an Arizona identification card, a state health card, a Phoenix health plan card and a VA choice card. The VA choice card was given to veterans in response to long delays in getting medical care from VA hospitals. It allows veterans to get medical care at Non-VA facilities.

He also received Social security benefits under the name Ruben Gallardo.

Quintana received benefits totaling $29,062.19.

He's been charged with fraudulent schemes, theft and seven counts of identity theft along with six counts of forgery.