Working in truck-driving business while collecting benefits lands amputee in prison

A Vancleave man has been ordered to repay nearly $106,000 in disability benefits he was not eligible to receive for nearly six years.

Ricky Wade Perry, 46, was ordered to repay $105,702.90 in Social Security Disability Insurance benefits at his sentencing Wednesday in a Social Security fraud case. He had pleaded guilty in July to theft of government money.

Chief U.S. District Judge Louis Guirola Jr. also sentenced him to five months in prison followed by three years of post-release supervision.

Perry has an artificial leg and has undergone more than 20 surgeries, according to letters of support filed in court records.

He had notified Social Security workers that he was unable to return to work from July 2009 through March 2015, U.S. Assistant Gregory K. Davis said in a news release Friday.

However, Perry performed “substantial work” in the truck-driving business during that time and failed to report his work to the Social Security Administration, Davis said.

Perry must report to a designated prison within 72 hours of being notified where he will serve his time, a judgment entered in court records Friday said.

The case was investigated by the SSA Office of Investigations and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrea Jones.

Robin Fitzgerald: 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews