Dustin Steinhoff, News Editor

Local

An Illinois man pleaded guilty to posing as a nurse without the proper credentials in three St. Louis health care institutions beginning in 2017.

Benjamin Danneman, who is currently serving a prison sentence in Illinois for an attempted burglary in St. Clair County and possession of methamphetamine, ID theft, forgery and other charges in Cook County, admitted that he had partaken in health care and Social Security fraud and aggravated identity theft in the St. Louis District Court March 13.

According to the case’s court documents, Danneman applied for a nursing position at Favorite Healthcare Staffing Inc. using the name of a Texas nurse rather than his own Oct. 30, 2017. Danneman also claimed in the application that his previous work experience included a position at a company that had been dissolved four years prior and a nursing position at a hospital that he could not have legally held. Additionally, Danneman was incarcerated for a portion of the time he claimed he was working at his first company.

After receiving the job at Favorite Healthcare, Danneman was placed in the skilled nursing section at the Sherbrooke facility in which he cared for three Medicare patients before being placed at the Rehabilitation Institute of St. Louis Nov. 2, 2017. Favorite Healthcare ended relations with Danneman after a urine test revealed he tested positive for amphetamines Nov. 7, 2017. Soon after, Danneman landed a job at Des Peres Healthcare LLC using fake credentials once again.

The Texas Board of Nursing contacted the nurse whose credentials were stolen by Danneman Nov. 29, 2017. It was then that investigators discovered Danneman never obtained a nursing license or any other medical license.

National

The largest college admissions scheme in history is currently being investigated, with 50 people being charged for their involvement in the nationwide fraud to unfairly get students enrolled into top universities.

Among the accused are wealthy parents, Hollywood actresses, college athletic coaches and college prep executives. Coaches from universities such as Yale, Stanford, the University of Southern California and other colleges are among the coaches being accused in the case.

The scheme was fairly simple in concept. The parents would allegedly pay a college prep organization to correct their child’s incorrect answers or to have the organization complete the test on the student’s behalf. The organization would also allegedly bribe college athletic coaches to recruit a student into college as an athlete no matter the skill level. According to federal court documents, a number of defendants also allegedly fabricated athletic profiles in order to make the student seem as though they were successful athletes.

In a statement provide to CNN, FBI Special Agent Joseph Bonavolonta said the accused parents paid anywhere between $200,000 and $6.5 million to ensure their children were admitted into college. The criminal accusations date back as far as 2011.

International

With the United Kingdom set to depart from the European Union March 29, British lawmakers decisively rejected Brexit legislature March 13, this time a no-deal Brexit, once again complicating the British departure from the United Nations.

British lawmakers expressed fears of economic turmoil and increased tensions with Northern Ireland that could result from the legislation.

In a vote of 321-278, British parliament members backed an edited version of British Prime Minister Theresa May’s motions that “rejects the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a Withdrawal Agreement.”

If no Brexit deal can be reached by the time the UK is set to separate from the EU, a no-deal Brexit could still happen if the EU does not accept a request to extend the deadline.

On March 21, May will request a Brexit deadline extension.