SEWARD PARK – A Seward Park couple who collected welfare while living in a $1.2 million waterfront home are headed to prison.
A federal judge sentenced chiropractor David Silverstein and his wife, Lyudmila Shimonova, to 18 months in prison Friday. Silverstein must also pay a criminal fine of $30,000, even though he’s already paid $334,000 in restitution and civil penalties.
Shimonova was also ordered to pay $261,000 in restitution.
Prosecutors said Silverstein pretended that he was Shimonova’s landlord, and that she was living at the home on Lake Washington with her two children. In reality, Silverstein was living there too.
They received more than $1,200 each month in federal housing assistance, and Shimonova also received more than $100,000 in state and Social Security benefits while owning a $12,500 platinum and diamond ring and $17,000 diamond earrings.
Federal investigators raided the couple’s Lake Washington home in late November looking for evidence that they’ve bilked government assistance programs for nearly a decade.
According to court documents, the couple began defrauding the Department of Housing and Urban Development in 2003, when they falsely claimed that Silverstein was charging Shimonova monthly rent for her and her two children to live at his waterfront property.
The $1.2 million waterfront home where prosecutors say a Seattle chiropractor and his wife lived while claiming welfare assistance. Photo/King County Dept. of Assessments