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Man who used dead brother to defraud union sentenced to two years probation

A Williamsville man who admitted he used his dead brother to defraud a trade union of worker benefits was sentenced Thursday in federal court to serve two years of probation — including six months of detention – and ordered to perform 100 hours of community service, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Prosecutors said 61-year-old Timothy McCluskey, who was convicted of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, conspired with another individual between Nov. 21, 2014, and January 2015 to defraud the International Union of Painters & Allied Trades.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, McCluskey filed a back-dated application in December 2014 to have his deceased brother reinstated into the union. In January 2015, McCluskey filed a death benefit claim in his brother’s name with the union.

As a result, the union issued life insurance proceeds to McCluskey in the amount of $2,500, prosecutors said.

In addition, the U.S. Attorney's Office said, between December 2014 and February 2015, McCluskey engaged in a scheme to defraud the Hartford Insurance Co. by falsely claiming to the International Union of Painters & Allied Trades that his dead brother had worked more than 500 hours at McCluskey's painting company, E&M Star Painting, during the first four months of 2014, which would have made his brother eligible for a $50,000 life insurance policy.

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