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Fmr VA director sentenced to 2 years probation

Posted at 12:12 PM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-16 16:09:25-04

The former director of the Phoenix VA Health Care System has been sentenced to 2 years of probation after pleading guilty to making false financial disclosures to the federal government about yearly gifts.

U.S. District Court Judge Steven Logan sentenced Sharon Helman Monday for failing to disclose more than $19,000 in gifts that included concert tickets, a car, roundtrip airfare and resort spa services.

Helman pleaded down to a single charge under a plea agreement reached with prosecutors prior to sentencing.

She was fired from her position as director in 2014 when whistleblowers disclosed to Congress that veterans seeking appointments faced delays of up to a year and that some had died while on secret wait lists.

Authorities first learned about Helman accepting gifts while investigating the wait lists.