New York - 30 Caught In Orange County Welfare Sting: Officials Vow To Continue Pursuing Fraudsters
New York - Two Kiryas Joel residents were named among thirty defendants who allegedly obtained over $300,000 in public assistance and have been charged with welfare fraud by Orange County officials.
An announcement made at a press conference this morning held by Orange County District Attorney David Hoovler, who was joined by County Executive Steve Neuhaus and Sheriff Carl DuBois, detailed $324,793.85 of fraudulently obtained benefits by those 30 defendants through the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, Temporary Assistance Benefits and bogus Medicaid payments. Today’s announcement marks Hoovler’s third fraud enforcement sweep in Orange County since taking office in 2014, and to date 97 individuals have been charged with welfare fraud to the tune of $1,073,676.33.
One Kiryas Joel resident was charged with Welfare Fraud in the 2nd Degree for having illegally received $61,442.27 in Medicaid benefits to which he was not entitled, with his solely owned corporation facing the same charges for underreporting the individual’s income.
A second village resident was charged with Welfare Fraud in the 3rd Degree for having fraudulently received $21,133.91 in unentitled Medicaid benefits. His Subchapter S corporation is also facing the same charges for helping the defendant underreport his income by structuring draws from the business to make him appear Medicaid eligible and for creating false documents understating his income.
If convicted, the two men could potentially face maximum prison sentences of 5 to 15 years and 2 1/3 to 7 years, respectively.
Several different county agencies were involved in the sweep, including the Department of Social Services Special Investigation Unit, which reviewed files of possible fraud suspects and interviewed those individuals before forwarding the cases to the district attorney’s office. A large number of those arrested were interviewed by both the district attorney’s and sheriff’s offices before any arrests were made.
At this morning’s press conference, Neuhaus reiterated the county’s tough stance on those who would abuse the welfare system.
“Since taking office in January of 2014, District Attorney David Hoovler and I have had a zero-tolerance policy on people abusing the Social Services system,” said Neuhaus at a press conference this morning. “We have used all of our resources to enforce the laws and bring people abusing them to justice.”
“My office remains a committed partner to the District Attorney’s office and continues to assist in these investigations that take money away from those in true need of public assistance,” added Sheriff DuBois.
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