A 44-year-old Mesa man has been sentenced to probation and restitution after pleading guilty to theft from the Department of Homeland Security, authorities said.
Sean M. Nelson, 44, was sentenced last week, by United States District Judge Susan R. Bolton to two years of federal probation and ordered to pay $133,999 in restitution to the Department of Homeland Security, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona.
Nelson pleaded guilty to theft of government property in October and agreed to resign from the Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations as part of his plea agreement with the government, according to a release.
Between November 2019 and October 2021, Nelson, then a special agent with HSI, worked without permission or authorization for several private companies while on duty for HSI and used his government-owned vehicle “for such unauthorized outside work,” the release stated.
“Nelson drove the (government vehicle) that he agreed to use only for HSI duty purposes, while working for Amazon, Uber and Lyft during time periods he was supposed to be working for HSI.
“Nelson’s actions in working for these companies while on duty for HSI resulted in tens of thousands of dollars in losses to the government.”
U.S. Attorney Gary Restaino said as a result of the conviction, Nelson has forfeited “much of his salary during the time period of his on-the-job criminal activity and as a federal felon he’ll never lawfully possess or use a firearm ever again.
“His dereliction of duty was a grave disservice to his hard-working law enforcement colleagues and the taxpayers alike.”