Federal charges have been brought against 28 individuals in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The accused individuals include federal employees and doctors who allegedly conspired to commit workers' compensation fraud. Federal prosecutors announced the charges on Monday.

Allegedly Stole $8.7 Million From the Federal Government

Allegedly, the accused individuals defrauded the U.S. government out of $8.7 million. The charges brought against them include conspiracy and bribery. According to U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas, all 28 have already signed agreements that they will plead guilty to certain charges. At this time, it has not been revealed which specific charges they will plead guilty to.

Among the defendants are a senor claims examiner from the U.S. Department of Labor, medical professionals and 21 individuals who falsely claimed they had on-the-job injuries preventing them from performing their job duties.

Allegedly, the defendants collected $8.7 million in fraudulent claims. If convicted, they could be sentenced to federal prison for one to 15 years.

Product of a 2-Year Investigation

The criminal charges were the product of a two-year investigation completed by U.S. special agents from the Department of Labor and the U.S. Postal Service. U.S. District Attorney John Parker said, “Their dogged determination and skilled investigative techniques were crucial in exposing and dissecting this sprawling corruption scheme."

The alleged scheme related to Veterans Affairs and federal postal employees who falsely claimed that their workplace injuries prevented them from completing their job duties. Workers' compensation rules allow federal employees to receive between 66 to 75 percent of their salaries tax-free -- or a lump-sum distribution of monetary benefits in some cases -- if the injuries prevent them from working and/or require extensive medical treatment.