By Andy Stonehouse
A day after being sentenced to at least 30 years in jail for child sex crimes
, disgraced Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky will also lose his state pension benefits.
Officials with Pennsylvania's State Employees Retirement System contacted Sandusky by mail to inform him that his crimes did indeed result in the forfeiture of his pension benefits, totaling $59,000 per year.
The letter explained to Sandusky that he will be denied his monthly $4,908 retirement annuity and also explained that his wife will no longer be entitled to a survivor's benefit.
Sandusky's lawyer, Karl Rominger, went on the defensive and said that the retirement fund lacks the authority to revoke his benefits, regardless of the crime.
"It is my inclination to believe that they are just going through the motions to try to throw some red meat to the public, but they know they are going to lose," Rominger told reporters.
Rominger argues that the state fund's claims are technically incorrect - public school employees can lose their benefits if convicted of sex crimes against a student - and that since Sandusky wasn't accused of molesting a Penn State student, the law does not apply.
State officials say that Sandusky maintained substantial ties to Penn State after his 1999 retirement and those qualify him as a de facto employee, subject to forfeiture rules.
The letter to Sandusky was revealed to The Associated Press after an open-records request. Those records also show that Sandusky, who began working as a Penn State football coach in 1969, received a lump-sum payment of $148,000 when he retired, and has received more than $900,000 in pension
benefits since then.
Sandusky has 30 days to appeal the board's decision.
Originally published on BenefitsPro.com