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Man Falsely Claims $12K in Housing Benefits, Prosecutors Say

By Nicholas Rizzi | November 7, 2016 4:49pm

STATEN ISLAND — A man stole $12,000 in benefits after falsely claiming he lived in Section 8 housing in South Beach, prosecutors said.

He used the funds to pay rent for a Grasmere apartment, authorities said.

Michael Bermel, 49, reported he lived in an New York City Housing Authority address on Arthur Avenue from April 2012 to March 2013 to get Section 8 rent subsidies, according to his criminal complaint.

He actually lived in non-Section 8 housing on Clove Road during that time and used the $12,063.64 in subsidies to pay his landlord, prosecutors said.

Bermel, who currently lives in Clifton, was arrested Wednesday and charged with grand larceny and falsifying business records, according to the Staten Island District Attorney's office.

He was released without bail and is due back in court on Jan. 23, according to online court records.

Bermel's lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.