BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Two Allen County, Kentucky, farmers pleaded guilty in United States District Court today, before Magistrate Judge H. Brent Brennenstuhl, to a single charge each of crop insurance fraud announced United States Attorney John E. Kuhn, Jr.
According to the separate plea agreements, David Manion, 53, and Henry Manion, 48, aided and abetted by others, admitted to knowingly making false statements and reports on applications for insurance. Both defendants made false statements for the purpose of influencing the actions (insurance payments) of the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) and Producers Agriculture Insurance Company (ProAg), a company insured by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation. Additionally, David Manion had crop insurance provided by Rural Community Insurance Services (RCIS), a company insured by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC).
The violations by Henry Manion occurred between August 10, 2009, and February 14, 2012, in Allen and Simpson Counties in Kentucky. The violations by David Manion occurred between August 25, 2009, and February 7, 2012, in Allen, Simpson and Warren Counties in the Western District of Kentucky. At all relevant times, their tobacco crops were covered by companies insured by the FCIC.
According to the plea agreement, David Manion had eight (8) separate tobacco crop insurance policies on eight (8) different crops. David Manion, aided and abetted by others, admitted to intentionally overstating crop damage for each crop on a crop insurance claim, resulting in a loss of $1,133,498.
According to a separate plea agreement, Henry Manion had five (5) separate tobacco crop insurance policies on five (5) different crops. Henry Manion, aided and abetted by others, admitted to intentionally overstating crop damage for each crop on a crop insurance claim form, resulting in a loss of $1,104,087.
According to the terms of the plea agreements, at sentencing the United States agrees to recommend a sentence for both defendants at the lowest end of the sentencing guideline range and each defendant will be required to make full restitution to the FCIC. If convicted at trial, Henry Manion and David Manion each faced a maximum prison term of 30 years and a maximum fine of $1,000,000.
Sentencing is scheduled before U.S. District Judge Gregory N. Stivers on December 5, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
These cases are being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David Weiser and are being investigated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Office of Inspector General (OIG).