A Waldoboro man pleaded guilty Jan. 26 in federal court to receiving $141,214 in Social Security disability payments, even though he was receiving another steady source of money.

Wayne A. Flaherty, 53, entered his plea Jan. 26 in U.S. District Court in Bangor to a single count of Social Security concealment fraud. A sentencing date has not been scheduled, but Flaherty faces up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, and up to three years of supervised release.

He will be sentenced after the completion of a pre-sentence investigation report by the U.S. Probation Office.

A plea agreement, reached between the defense and prosecution, states that Flaherty will not appeal the sentence if the incarceration ordered does not exceed nine months.

According to paperwork filed in court by the U.S. Attorney's Office, Flaherty began receiving Supplemental Security Income in February 2000 and continued to receive it through May 2018. During that time, he received the $141,214.

During that time, Flaherty was also receiving monthly payments from an individual the U.S. Attorney's Office did not identify in court papers. The payments began at $1,500 per month, but increased substantially to the point he ended up receiving $846,615 from February 2012 through July 2017.

That outside income made him ineligible for the Social Security payments intended for people with limited income who are disabled or elderly.

The unnamed individual also provided Flaherty with a home and its contents in February 2012.

Flaherty also received money from other individuals who acted as intermediaries between Flaherty and the individual, providing monthly payments.

Those payments ended in May 2018 when the individual died.

Flaherty never notified the Social Security Administration about the income, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

On Aug. 9, 2018, an SSA Office of the Inspector General agent and a Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office detective interviewed Flaherty. During the interview, he admitted he received money from "Individual A" over the previous 18 years, while receiving SSI, and that he was receiving money when he first applied for benefits.

He also admitted to failing to disclose his receipt of money, assets and material aspects of his living arrangements during a redetermination of his eligibility for benefits in January 2017, despite knowing he was required to report these.

The reason he did not report these to Social Security was because he was afraid his benefits would have stopped, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. Flaherty signed a statement admitting to his conduct and expressing regret for his actions.

The Maine Department of Health and Human Services, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office and the Knox County Sheriff’s Office assisted in the investigation along with the Social Security Administration.