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Pastor and wife indicted
By Tom Marshall
Senior Advocate writer

A federal grand jury has indicted William “Robbie” Conn, pastor of Jeffersonville Assembly of God, and his wife, Tanya D. Conn, aka Tanya D. Lewis, on seven counts.

The pair are accused of committing fraud involving the Social Security Disability Insurance and Medicare programs of more than $100,000 over six years before and after Robbie Conn had heart transplant surgery in 2010.

The indictment alleges that Robbie Conn collected benefits from the programs while still working as pastor of the church and receiving salary that was diverted to his wife to conceal the fraud.

The grand jury for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky in Lexington returned the indictment July 6.

The indictment alleges that from May 2009 until August 2015 Robbie and Tanya D. Conn committed SSA (Social Security Administration) fraud by “willfully and knowingly stealing and converting to their own use or the use of another, money of the SSA, an agency of the United States, to which they knew they were not entitled, in the amount of approximately $111,382.”

The indictment also alleges that the couple committed Health Benefits Fraud by collecting $26,808.87 of additional money from Medicare “in connection with the payment for health care benefits, items and services” under “materially false and fraudulent pretenses.”

According to court documents, as part of the alleged conspiracy, Robbie Conn learned that he had a heart condition that would require surgery and on or around May 19, 2009, he applied for SSDI benefits claiming he had been disabled and unable to work since May 15 of that year.

SSDI payments of $1,082 per month began in November 2009 while Robbie Conn continued to work as a pastor, the indictment alleges.
Tanya D. Conn allegedly notified the church board that her level of income did not affect her husband’s SSDI eligibility for the purpose of influencing them to pay her husband’s salary to her.

The indictment alleges that Robbie Conn returned to work as pastor in May 2010 after having the heart surgery that February, but failed to notify the SSA while his wife was paid his salary.

“In this way, William ‘Robbie’ Conn could receive Social Security benefits, while still receiving a salary from Jeffersonville Assembly of God,” the indictment alleges.

Because of the SSDI determination, the indictment alleges that Robbie Conn was potentially eligible to receive Medicare benefits for health care services if he remained on SSDI for 24 months after the date of his initial eligibility determination in May 2009.

“Because he concealed his employment status from SSA and the fact that he had returned to work in May 2010, William ‘Robbie’ Conn received Medicare coverage for health care services provided from December 2011 until June 2015, well after he returned to work for Jeffersonville Assembly of God,” the indictment alleges.

The indictment also alleges that Robbie Conn falsified forms at the SSA office in Lexington on or around Aug. 15, 2014, stating that he had not worked since 2009 under the penalties of perjury.

During this time, Tanya D. Conn was allegedly paid twice per month for the salary that actually belonged to her husband.

On each of five counts the couple faces not more than five years imprisonment, a $250,00 fine, and three years supervised release. On two counts, they face up to 10 years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and three years supervised release.

The indictment also states that restitution is required, if applicable, and the sentences would include a special assessment of $100 per count.
An indictment is a formal accusation of a crime, but does not establish guilt.

A message left for pastor Conn at the church was not returned by press time. The number listed for the Conns in the phone book has also been disconnected.

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