Cops: Guy Posed as Senator to Avoid Paying Loan
Sidney Hines' alleged scheme didn't work
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2016 1:29 PM CDT
The US Capitol building is seen in Washington.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

(Newser) – A man's alleged scheme to make officials forget about his outstanding loan not only failed, but could put him behind bars for up to 15 years. Police say Sidney Hines, 67, received a federal HomeSaver Advance loan for about $6,000 in 2008 on his home in New Port Richey, Fla. After he failed to make the necessary payments, however, police say Hines began calling a debt-collection agency pretending to be a senator from Illinois. The indictment identifies the senator as "RD"—likely Richard Durbin, now Senate minority whip—per the AP.

He allegedly assured officials that Hines had paid his HSA loan in full and pressed them to remove it from his credit report in numerous calls placed between March 2013 and the end of 2014, per WFLA. US Capitol Police and the Federal Housing Finance Agency eventually caught wind of the scheme. Hines has been charged with five counts of false impersonation of a federal officer and faces up to three years in prison per count. (Donald Trump is accused of impersonating a spokesman.)