Richard E. Kohl, valor thief, pleads guilty to defrauding the VA

| July 10, 2018

HMC Ret sends us a link to the news that 83-year-old Richard E. Kohl pleaded guilty in Pensacola, Florida to defrauding the Department of Veterans’ Affairs of $219,719.39. From the Department of Justice;

Documents introduced at the time of the guilty plea reflect that, at some point prior to July 3, 1996, Kohl created and signed a fictitious Form DD-214 that falsely reported that he served in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War and was discharged on December 20, 1961. Kohl never served in any branch of the United States military. Kohl used the false Form DD-214 as proof of his military service to obtain veterans’ benefits he was not entitled to receive. Between February 3, 2005, and February 9, 2018, Kohl received benefit payments and services totaling approximately $219,719.39 from the VA.

“By defrauding the federal government for personal gain, Kohl stole resources needed to help real veterans,” said U.S. Attorney Canova. “These benefits are meant for the brave men and women who have served our country.”

Monty Stokes, Special Agent in Charge, VA Office of Inspector General said, “The VA benefits fraudulently received by Mr. Kohl were intended to provide financial and health care support for veterans who honorably served in the armed forces of the United States. This guilty plea is the result of the successful investigative and prosecutive efforts of the VA OIG and the U.S. Attorney’s Office. These continued efforts safeguard the integrity of VA programs, and ensure that VA benefits are provided only to those who have earned them.”

I don’t know what is going on at the VA, but it seems to me that there are too many of these folks slipping through. This old coot had no military service, and that fact should have been available to the gatekeepers at the VA from the git. Now they want to imprison the guy for ten years and what good is that going to do anyone?

That $200k is gone. He’ll never live long enough to pay that back. Veterans are the ultimate victims.

Category: Veterans' Affairs Department

Comments (33)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

Sites That Link to this Post

  1. In The Mailbox: 07.10.18 : The Other McCain | July 10, 2018
  1. Jay says:

    Good Lord…does NO ONE VERIFY service before stamping “Approved”?

    • NHSparky says:

      I’ll take, “Fuck no!” for $1000, Alex.

    • AZtoVA says:

      With the length of time it takes to get an FOIA response from the Archives, how do you propose they vet every claimant up front? It already takes 6-12 months just to get a rating, adding another 3-6 months to that would be an undue burden on many actual veterans.

      • NHSparky says:

        As opposed to what? Not getting benefits at all because the fake fuckers have sucked the system dry?

        What percentage of the DVA budget goes to phonies, you figure? I don’t think anyone knows, much less cares, but I’d be shocked if it was less than 20-25 percent.

  2. Combat3c0 says:

    I find it odd that a faker and a thief like this gets approved. Yet real vets with legitimate conditions who need help are being turned away! Sounds like the inmates are running the asylum. JMHO

    • jim h says:

      …or downplayed as to the severity of the wounds/injuries. *that’s* the thing that galls me the most.

  3. 26Limabeans says:

    I would venture a guess that the vast majority of Americans think the VA has service records.
    They don’t.

    • Tom Huxton says:

      yahbut, one govt agency should be able to reach another in the normal course of business

      • 26Limabeans says:

        VA compensation is not only non taxable, it is non reportable. The info is shared with other agencies such as SS etc. but wether or not the person is eleigble is entirely under the VA’s pervue.
        It would be nice if they had an office at the records center for just this purpose but that would upset the way things are done in the swamp.

    • Jonn Lilyea says:

      While I was flat on my back with my second heart attack in the DC VA emergency room, they were able to verify that I was eligible for treatment based solely on my SSN.

      • 26Limabeans says:

        Seems easy enough to do in emergencies and it should be that way regardless.
        Not sure when they stopped using SSN for service numbers but that’s a clever hint in my case. Hell it’s on the ARCOM citation.
        Funeral directors can verify service through the VA for obtaining burial flags in just 24 hours so I see no excuse for giving away the farm to this guy.


      They have systems in place now that check with SSN# to verify Honorable service, that is how LOW’s and other civilian companies are doing it now and same with VSO’s. The problem is those systems didn’t start till around 2013-2014, so they didn’t go back and check the service of those that have been in the system. The only way they will be found out is being reported by people like us or like this blog.

  4. bim says:

    The funny thing is, the VA denied this guy several times when they could verify neither his service or the reported Purple Heart that he claimed he got from being shot in the foot in Korea. When He went back a third time to claim vision problems, he was approved.

    You’d think the first two denials would have raised a flag with someone. SMH.

    Here’s the document with the facts of the case:

    • bim says:

      Hmm. Looks like I read that wrong. He was only denied once. Still…

    • Jonn Lilyea says:

      It’s the same with Joe Cryer. One VA doctor called BS on his claim, and he went to a second doctor who approved his claim for PTSD for his solo attack on Libya in 1986.

      • 26Limabeans says:

        Doctor shopping is a big part of it just like SSDI claims. The VA appeal process could also use some streamlining. Every award letter comes with an appeal form and the VSO’s will appeal the decision until won. I like that. Mine did it for me.
        But the phonies need to be vetted out of the process at the front door.

        • Non Cedo Ferio says:

          I think that since his claims were before the rollout of the VBMS system it might have been easier to fall through the cracks. It reminds me of the Roberts V Shinseki case where the guy got 100 percent PTSD for claiming trauma in witnessing a buddy die at Aviano. Well it was after he kept saying after the award that the VA was defrauding him that they took a closer look at his file and found he wasn’t present when the supposed incident took place and he didn’t know the guy who was killed. I think he got jail time for that and like this dude got denied prior. Again pre VBMS

  5. chooee lee says:

    I don’t give a rats ass how old he is lock him up and shove the key up his ass.

    • Mick says:



      Where the hell have you been?

      Good to see you ‘back in the fight’!

  6. Combat Historian says:

    May this old maggoty piece of shit die a particularly nasty death…sorry, but I’m pissed and not in a charitable mood right now…

  7. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    There are too many free cheesers and everyone else is getting theirs-so-I-want-mine types out there. This old bastard just took it a step further than most do–or have to. He had no service at all. Socks and shoes. Coat and hat. Hand and glove. Fraud and the VA.

  8. Wilted Willy says:

    This ass hat is nothing, my pos brother has screwed us out of over 750K running his phony PTSD fraud! When will the VAOIG ever look into his case? We have published his phony DD214 next to his real one and still nobody gives a rats ass? Just keep sending him the check every month! God I am tired of bitching about him!!! Lock his ass up and melt the key, then pour it in his ass!!

    • rgr1480 says:

      Just wait …. they might nab your POS brother when he’s 80 years old.

      That would be a shock to his system.

      Hope it doesn’t take that long, though.

    • Skippy says:

      Things are changing….
      new president new motivation to clean up the abuse and fraud

  9. SGT Fon says:

    i don’t know why in this day and age that when you are discharged from the military they don’t just send a copy of your 214 to the VA. i haven’t actually signed a 214 with a pen for the past 3 that i have gotten. this ain’t rocket science. older vets should be required to be FOIA’d as part of the application process. but it makes too much sence…

  10. HMC Ret says:

    I worked more than a decade for the VA. During the enrollment process, the 214 was rarely questioned. Some of them were obviously bogus, but it didn’t much seem to matter. The vet was sometimes told care was contingent on matching with military records, but I would see the same vets, the ones with suspect documents, years later. I can’t remember half a dozen times when matching actually took place and the vet was bounced. Clerks were told to enroll everyone b/c it meant more money. The posers knew that and gamed the system.

  11. Ex-PH2 says:

    Gee, I don’t know how to “milk the system” like these jerks do. It wouldn’t do me any good, anyway. I only go to the FHCC for flu shots, ’cause nothing ever happens to me, so I can’t figure out how they do it, to start with.
    Is that the price you pay for not being a lying jerk? No free cheese?