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Answers wanted after I-Team found fake nephew cremated veteran without family's knowledge

Posted: 7:12 PM, Jul 30, 2019
Updated: 2019-07-31 03:26:16-04
Robert Walaconis.png

TAMPA, Fla. -- Florida's attorney general called for the state to step up its investigation after the I-Team found a fake nephew signed off on a local U.S. Navy veteran's death certificate and cremation without the family's knowledge.

I-Team Investigator Kylie McGivern discovered a gap in state law that makes this sort of thing possible.

FULL I-TEAM INVESTIGATION: State launches investigation after fake nephew cremates veteran

Through the case of veteran Robert Walaconis, the I-Team found there are no requirements for funeral homes to verify if the person signing off on a death certificate is actually who they say they are - a family member. Now, Attorney General Ashley Moody says she's closely following the state's investigation.

"If the allegations are true, that have been presented on, I agree that's abhorrent, it's something as a state we need to examine further. I've been in contact with the agency that would oversee that, to determine further what happened there," said Moody.

The state agency that oversees funeral homes is investigating the Walaconis case after the I-Team found a man falsely claiming to be a nephew signed off on the death certificate and cremation.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: I-Team investigation into veteran's cremation by a fake nephew prompts calls for change

"Ultimately, once those allegations are vetted, if they prove to be true, the appropriate prosecution authority would have to determine what next steps to take," Moody said.