A Bradenton veteran who spent his early years as a soldier in Vietnam has been sentenced for claiming false disability to the Department of Veterans Affairs.
According to court documents, Doyle Mullins, 71, spent more than 20 years claiming he was “totally and permanently blind.” As a result, since 1995, the VA paid him more than a half million dollars.
The payments came in lumps of thousands of dollars per month and included medical benefits payments for his wife and grants from the VA for a car and adaptive housing.
Investigators said they began surveillance of Mullins and watched him engage in activities such as driving, running errands and mowing his lawn.
He pleaded guilty to theft of government funds on Oct. 16, 2017.
A judge ordered Mullins to nine months of home detention and five years of probation. The court also entered a money judgment against him for $583,485.74, which is the total amount the VA sent him.