HARTFORD — A Canadian man accused of abducting his toddler son in Toronto in 1987 and living on the lam for three decades has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for illegally obtaining U.S. government benefits.
Allan Mann Jr. was sentenced Thursday in federal court in New Haven, Connecticut. He pleaded guilty to making a false statement in August.
Officials say Mann will be extradited to Toronto after serving his sentence to face an abduction charge there.
Authorities say Mann kidnapped his son 32 years ago during a court-ordered visitation. Law enforcement officials found him in Vernon, Connecticut, last year.
His son, now in his 30s, has been reunited with his mother since his father’s arrest.
Prosecutors say Mann illegally obtained more than $180,000 in housing and Medicaid benefits while in the U.S.
Canadian authorities allege Mann abducted his toddler son in 1987 during a court-ordered visitation in Toronto and fled to the U.S., where he and his son lived under aliases until he was arrested in Vernon, Connecticut, in October 2018. He has been detained since his arrest.
Officials said Mann told his son that his mother died shortly after his birth. His son, now in his 30s, was reunited with his mother after his father’s arrest.
Canadian officials have asked U.S. authorities to continue detaining Mann while they prepare a formal extradition request, U.S. prosecutors disclosed in court documents filed Wednesday that ask a judge to impose a new fugitive charge against Mann.
Prosecutors say Mann lied about his identity and used the alias Hailee DeSouza to obtain more than $125,000 in Section 8 housing benefits and more than $55,000 in Medicaid assistance. He pleaded guilty in August to one count of making a false statement, which carries up to five years in prison.
“For 31 years, Allan Mann hid in plain sight in the United States, posing as a U.S. citizen and reaping the benefits that such citizenship affords, including tens of thousands of dollars in housing and medical assistance,” Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sarah Karwan and Harold Chen wrote in their sentencing recommendation to Judge Janet Hall.
“Mann orchestrated these payments through a deliberate, intricate and lengthy deception on the government at every level,” they wrote.
Mann’s lawyer, David Ring, called the allegations against his client “a simple false statement case, involving modest losses to the United States government.”
“His crime, simply put, was to falsely claim to be an ‘eligible citizen’ so he could obtain benefits that, as a non-U.S. citizen, he was not entitled to receive,” Ring wrote in his sentencing recommendation.
Ring said Mann fled Canada with his son because he worried about his son’s safety during a bitter custody dispute with his wife, who planned to take the child to Jamaica.
U.S. authorities said Mann acquired counterfeit birth certificates for him and his son saying they were born in Houston and used his birth certificate to obtain a Social Security number.
U.S marshals and Toronto police launched a new effort to find Mann in 2016 while meeting at a law enforcement conference on capturing fugitives.
Officials said last year that U.S. marshals interviewed several of Mann’s relatives and friends, including a relative who pointed authorities to Connecticut and Mann’s alleged alias.