Gov. Wolf signs Stolen Valor bill into law, protecting veterans

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed a bill protecting benefits for Pennsylvania veterans on Tuesday, making it a crime to impersonate a soldier or veteran.

The so-called stolen valor bill, Act 9 House Bill 168, was originally introduced by Representative Rick Saccone.

The law prohibits the "fraudulent representation of military service or military decorations to obtain money, property, or other benefits."

"This new law makes it a crime to impersonate a soldier, a veteran of the armed services, or a recipient of a service medal or decoration in order to gain access to benefits, resources, or job opportunities that we set aside specifically for those who have heroically served our country," Governor Wolf said.

Governor Wolf noted that Pennsylvania is the home of the fourth largest veteran population in the United States.

"This legislation is incredibly important because Pennsylvania has the fourth-largest veteran population in the country and it is our duty to be certain that benefits for those veterans are available to those who have earned them," Wolf said Tuesday.

"An individual commits this crime if they intend to benefit by fraudulently presenting themselves as a member of the armed serves and/or the recipient of a military award," Rep. Saccone added.

Senator Tony Williams introduced stolen valor legislation in a previous legislative session.