A Mount Pleasant man is accused of cashing his mother's Veterans Affairs benefits checks after her death and keeping the money for himself.

Steven Crocker, 41, was indicted for theft of government property, U.S. Attorney W. Walter Wilkins announced in a press release Tuesday.

Federal investigators allege that from 2005 until 2008, Crocker embezzled approximately $51,000 of his mother's VA benefits by receiving and spending them after her death in 2005.

The maximum penalty that Crocker could receive is a fine of $250,000 and imprisonment for 10 years, the release said.

The case was investigated by agents from the federal Department of Veterans Affairs. Assistant U.S. Attorney Rhett DeHart of the Charleston office is handling the prosecution.