March 27, 2008 -- A North Carolina man, who claimed he saw years of combat and earned medals, including the Purple Heart, was found guilty this week of peddling a false military record in order to collect thousands in soldier disability payments.
Randall Moneymaker, of Clayton, N.C., claimed he had served as an Army Ranger on tours in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Panama and Grenada and had earned medals and badges of honor.
But, according to federal investigators, Moneymaker was a fraud who spent only a short time in the Army, was given a less than honorable discharge and never saw any combat.
"This defendant attempted to defraud the men and women who serve and protect our freedom," U.S. Attorney John Brownlee said, following the guilty verdict. Moneymaker was found guilty of making false statements, submitting false documents and theft of government funds.
Moneymaker's claims to collect more than $18,000 in disability payments were numerous. In a Veterans Affairs compensation and pension medical exam, he claimed he "had been involved in numerous combat situations, including RPG attacks and firefights," according to the federal indictment against him.
Moneymaker also said "he had sustained various service-connected injuries and illnesses, including shell fragment wound and post traumatic stress syndrome," according to his indictment.
Topping his claims, Moneymaker said he had the scars from combat service, but federal authorities say the scars match a liposuction procedure he had done.
"We hope this case will send a message," Brownlee told ABC News. "Through deceit and fraud, he took away money needed for our true American heroes."
Moneymaker faces a maximum sentence of 35 years in prison and a fine of $1,505,000.