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Farmer Charged With Filing False Claims



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A South Dakota farmer is charged in federal court with three counts of filing false crop insurance claims.
    
Fifty-two-year-old Nicholas Berbos has pleaded not guilty to the charges. Trial is scheduled May 13 in Aberdeen.
    
The indictment accuses Berbos of filing claims in 2009, 2010 and 2011 for payments from a federal crop insurance program when he knew he did not qualify for the funds.
    
Ace Crawford, community service coordinator with the U.S. attorney's office in Rapid City, declined to talk about specifics of the case because the investigation is ongoing.
    
Lawyers for Berbos could not be reached for comment.
    
Berbos faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison on each charge.
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