Oil Spill Crude Disaster

May 18, 2012 12:14 PM by AP

Man gets prison for oil-spill fraud

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - A 28-year-old Gulfport man has been sentenced to prison for 37 months and ordered to make restitution of $27,000 for fraud involving an oil-spill recovery claim.

The Sun Herald reports Moses W. Keys was sentenced Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge Louis Guirola Jr. also ordered three years of probation.

Keys had received an emergency check for $23,200 on Oct. 13, 2010, for income he claimed he lost from a job with John Miner's Fresh Seafood in Gulfport.

In November 2010, he gave the Gulf Coast Claims Facility a claim for final payment that showed a one-year loss of more than $78,000 from that job and one with Emeril's Gulf Coast Fish House in Gulfport. His estimates included $10,000 for "pain and suffering."

In his claim, filed in court as evidence, Keys said he began losing money from Miner's Fresh Seafood in March 2010. That was a month before the Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill.

He claimed his losses from Emeril's began in June 2010. The restaurant was closed in May 2010.

Keys pleaded guilty in February and had remained free on bond.

Two relatives also have pleaded guilty to fraud involving claims of lost wages from Miner's Fresh Seafood.

His wife, Sherketia Keys received five years of probation and was ordered to repay $15,700.

His father, convicted bank robber Bobby Earl Keys, received $32,500 in oil-spill recovery money. At the time of his arrest, he was accused of violating a federal probation and of committing identity theft and making counterfeit checks.

His sentencing was delayed until June 5 pending a mental evaluation.

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