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Former Firefighter Convicted Of Fraudulently Collecting Disability, Found To Be Doing Martial Arts

TRENTON, Nj., (CBS) -- New Jersey's acting Attorney General, Robert Lougy, announced that Shane B. Streater, a former Camden Firefighter, was convicted of stealing more than $82,000 by fraudulently collecting a disability pension from the state's Police and Firemen's Retirement System. While doing so, Streater was working as a martial arts instructor and participating in competitive mixed martial arts.

Streater, 41, was convicted of second-degree theft by deception. Sentencing is scheduled for May 20.

"Streater portrayed himself as a firefighter permanently disabled in the line of duty, but it was all a shameful charade, as he demonstrated by engaging in strenuous martial arts activities," said Lougy. "His ploy to steal pension benefits was a slap in the face of the honest firefighters and officers who continue to serve the public bravely and who are counting on that pension fund for their retirement."

Streater applied for accidental disability pension in January, 2010, claiming that he was disabled as a result of two accidents while on duty.

Doctors concluded that his disability was caused by a pre-existing condition and therefore, he qualified for ordinary disability pension, which pays out 40 percent of a person's salary and is taxed. Streated appealed for accidental disability pension which is not taxed and pays two-thirds of the person's salary.

Investigators unearthed video or Streater taking part in martial arts as he was collecting pension, which was as a result, revoked in April, 2012. By that time, Streater had collected $82,488 in benefits.

"I didn't take advantage of the system in anyway," Streater told Eyewitness News.

"Today I can feel fine. Tomorrow I can wake up and barely be able to climb up the steps," Streater said.

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