U.S. Atty: Mass. State Trooper falsified $11,000 in overtime

U.S. Atty: Mass. State Trooper falsified $11,000 in overtime

BOSTON — A suspended Massachusetts State Trooper has agreed to plead guilty on charges in the on-going overtime abuse scandal, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Kevin Sweeney, 40, has been charged with one count of embezzlement after federal prosecutors say he was paid over $11,000 for overtime hours he didn't work.

Court documents allege Sweeney was a trooper in Troop E and earned almost $250,000 in 2015. That included the $11,000 in overtime pay, according to prosecutors.

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The overtime scandal alleges troopers patrolling the Massachusetts Turnpike as part of Troop E assignments falsified overtime pay and accepted income for time they didn't work.

Earlier this week, four troopers were suspended without pay in the investigation.

A duty status hearing was held Wednesday for the department members relieved from duty on Monday after an internal review of overtime pay discrepancies in personnel records.

Colonel Kerry A. Gilpin, Superintendent of the state police, said the temporary relief of the four personnel from duty is a result of the department's continued review of records and data indicative of whether members were "present and working overtime shifts for which they were paid." The Boston Globe reports that investigators in 2014 were already looking at a pay scandal within the department that wasn't publicized.

A state police audit earlier this year found that more than 20 troopers may have been paid overtime for shifts they did not work. Several are facing criminal charges.