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A Boulder County woman pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to collecting more than $400,000 in benefits for her dead father.

Kathleen McCalib, 52, pleaded guilty to theft of government funds, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office. McCalib, who is free on bond, is set for sentencing on April 28.

“Accepting Social Security public retirement benefits intended for a person who has died is just like any other theft and will be treated accordingly,” said U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn in a statement. “In this case, it’s even worse because the victim is all of us — the taxpayers who fund these programs.”

According to the release, McCalib’s father died in late 2006. He was receiving both Social Security retirement benefits and a civil service retirement pension at the time of his death, but McCalib did not report his death to the federal government. For 12 years, she continued to receive funds to an account she had shared with her father and would frequently forge signatures on checks to herself.

Investigators believe McCalib collected and spent $429,454.46 in federal money after her father’s death.

“This guilty plea is a warning to those who misuse Social Security benefits after someone dies,” said Assistant Inspector General for Investigations Jennifer Walker of the Social Security Office of the Inspector General in a statement. “This is a federal crime, one we will continue to vigorously pursue. I want to thank the United States Attorney’s Office for its efforts to bring this individual to justice.”

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