Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Inspector General Files Welfare Fraud Charges on 68 Across Pennsylvania

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) filed welfare fraud charges against 68 individuals between Jan. 1 and Jan. 31, 2017. These charges will generate a total of $420,018.93 in restitution paid to the commonwealth, as well as additional cost savings as the defendants will be temporarily disqualified from receiving public benefits in the programs they defrauded.

For January 2017, the restitution totals by benefits program are: $273,166.89 for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP); $90,943.61 for medical assistance; $24,190.72 for cash assistance; $22,620 for subsidized day care; and $9,097.71 for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

“These cases range from a low of $1,040 in fraudulently obtained SNAP benefits to a high of $58,891.50 in fraudulently obtained SNAP and medical assistance benefits,” Inspector General Bruce R. Beemer noted. “The OIG is committed to pursuing welfare fraud in all its forms.”

The OIG filed five criminal cases of fraudulently receiving public assistance in Pennsylvania that were graded as a misdemeanor of the second degree. The defendants are:

 - Rahaeem I. Harper, 36, of Reading in Berks County, for $1,040.00 in SNAP fraud.
 - Gail B. Snyder, 57, of Wilkes Barre in Luzerne County, for $1,105 in SNAP fraud.
 - Frances J. Myers, 56, of Slippery Rock in Butler County, for $1,119 in SNAP fraud.
 - Mark A. Brooks, 51, of Chambersburg in Franklin County, for $1,307 in SNAP fraud
 - Julisa Spain, 27, of Scranton in Lackawanna County, for $1,368 in SNAP fraud.

If convicted, the maximum penalty they face is two years in prison and a fine of $5,000, plus a mandatory disqualification period from the benefits program they defrauded.

The OIG filed 28 criminal cases of fraudulently receiving public assistance in Pennsylvania that were graded as a misdemeanor of the first degree. The defendants are:

• Robin L. Bonecutter, 54, of Hopwood in Fayette County, for $1,533 in SNAP fraud.
• Daina I. Alvarez-Troche, 33, of Lancaster in Lancaster County, for $1,579.89 in SNAP fraud.
• Kimberly S. Bauman, 53, of Vandergrift of Westmoreland County, for $1,605 in SNAP fraud.
• Georgia Krayee, 27, of Glenolden in Delaware County, for $1,649 in SNAP fraud.
• Mandchoue Clerfond, 40, of Wilkes Barre in Luzerne County, for $1,785 in SNAP fraud.
• Grant C. Luciano, 29, of Erie in Erie County, for $1,810.04 in medical assistance fraud.
• Stacie L. Apps, 33, of Columbus in Warren County, for $1,850 in SNAP fraud.
• Brittany A. Miller, 27, of Lebanon in Lebanon County, for $1,969 in SNAP fraud.
• Ashlyn N. Socoski, 23, of Corry in Erie County, for $2,023 in SNAP fraud.
• Laura C. Malago, 38, of Greensburg in Westmoreland County, for $2,028 in SNAP fraud.
• Tanisha Allen, 38, of Norristown in Montgomery County, for $2,044 in SNAP fraud.
• Anthony L. Jefferson, Jr., 34, of Johnstown in Cambria County, for $2,099.85 in medical assistance fraud.
• Tammy M. Corrado, 37, of Lansdale in Montgomery County, for $2,123 in SNAP fraud.
• Jacqueline Tolentino, 36, of Reading in Berks County, for $2,183 in SNAP fraud.
• Joleesha N. McNiss-Heist, 23, of Lebanon in Lebanon County, for $2,197 in SNAP fraud.
• Robbyn L. Woodring, 28, of Meadville in Crawford County, for $2,430 in SNAP fraud.
• Korinn D. Graham, 37, of Aliquippa in Beaver County, for $2,570 in SNAP fraud.
• Jennifer L. Edwards, 46, of Pittsburgh in Allegheny County, for $2,446.64 in SNAP fraud and $160 in LIHEAP fraud.
• Tammy M. Hamm, 41, of Houtzdale in Clearfield County, for $828 in SNAP fraud and $1,799.18 in medical assistance fraud.
• Destinee N. Anderson, 31, of Needmore in Fulton County, for $2,706 in SNAP fraud.
• Nicole S. Clippinger, 40, of Johnstown in Cambria County, for $648 in SNAP fraud and $2,109.37 in medical assistance fraud.
• Brigida Araujo, 40, of Scranton in Lackawanna County, for $2,884 in SNAP fraud.
• Lisa A. Fink, 47, of New Paris in Bedford County, for $2,913 in SNAP fraud.
• Bradley L. Elensky, 45, of Curwensville in Clearfield County, for $2,947.53 in medical assistance fraud.
• Garmai Zubah, 27, of Darby in Delaware County, for $2,979 in SNAP fraud.
• Jennifer M. Rosario, 32, of Allentown in Lehigh County, for $2,982 in SNAP fraud.
• Jessica Ayers, 33, of Moscow in Lackawanna County, for $2,626 in SNAP fraud.
• Kristianna M. Law, 29, of East Stroudsburg in Monroe County, for $2,182 in SNAP fraud.

If convicted, the maximum penalty they face is five years in prison and a fine of $10,000, plus a mandatory disqualification period from the benefits program they defrauded.

The OIG filed 35 criminal cases of fraudulently receiving public assistance in Pennsylvania that were graded as a felony of the third degree. The defendants are:

• Julia L. Rogers, 40, of Glenside in Montgomery County, for $3,034.96 in SNAP fraud.
• Kimberly N. Ewing, 40, of New Providence in Lancaster County, for $3,133 in SNAP fraud.
• Brittany N. Lynch, 27, of Hermine in Westmoreland County, for $1,264 in SNAP fraud and $1,935.19 in LIHEAP fraud.
• Tiffany N. Gemas, 29, of Everson in Fayette County, for $3,245 in SNAP fraud.
• Jeannie M. Oblak, 38, of Ruffs Dale in Westmoreland County, for $784 in SNAP fraud and $2,500 in LIHEAP fraud.
• Latisha McNeil, 42, of Scranton in Lackawanna County, for $3,307 in SNAP fraud.
• Latrease Dennis, 30, of Norristown in Montgomery County, for $2,717 in SNAP fraud and $660 in cash assistance fraud.
• Amber L. Burkett, 40, of Cabot in Westmoreland County, for $3,741 in SNAP fraud.
• Gloria J. Kelly, 53, of Hunker in Westmoreland County, for $3,781 in SNAP fraud.
• Michael A. Perttu, 48, of Altoona in Blair County, for $3,834.66 in medical assistance fraud.
• Melissa A. Lauderbaugh, 44, of North East in Erie County, for $3,873.04 in medical assistance fraud.
• Jari Collins, 44, of Breinigsville in Lehigh County, for $4,297 in SNAP fraud.
• Becky M. Geiger, 46, of Lemoyne in Cumberland County, for $5,095 in SNAP fraud.
• Julie A. Strickler, 26, of New Castle in Lawrence County, for $5,141 in SNAP fraud.
• Michele L. Skrekla, 38, of North East in Erie County, for $6,016 in SNAP fraud.
• Ana Garcia, 38, of Allentown in Lehigh County, for $6,360 in SNAP fraud.
• Keyshly A. Caba, 22, of Lebanon in Lebanon County, for $6,455 in SNAP fraud.
• Krystal K. Cowan, 30, of Claymont in Delaware County, for $6,512 in SNAP fraud.
• Raushanah Young, 35, of Philadelphia in Philadelphia County, for $3,438 in SNAP fraud and $3,231.93 in cash assistance fraud.
• Yahaira Mercado, 32, of Reading in Berks County, for $6,699 in SNAP fraud.
• Chase D. Flynn, 33, of Greenville in Mercer County, for $6,778 in SNAP fraud.
• Rosa L. Torres, 28, of Lancaster in Lancaster County, for $2,796 in SNAP fraud and $4,160.99 in medical assistance fraud.
• Ariel M. McCafferty, 27, of Westmoreland City in Westmoreland County, for $923.40 in SNAP fraud and $6,223 in medical assistance fraud.
• James M. Chappell, 54, of Burgettstown in Washington County, for $1,552 in SNAP fraud and $6,500.10 in medical assistance fraud.
• Genie M. Hasbrouck, 34, of Corry in Warren County, for $6,984 in SNAP fraud and $1,195.52 in LIHEAP fraud.
• Alison L. Vinopal, 29, and Kasey L. Hardwick, 32, of Sheffield in Warren County, for $14,568 in SNAP fraud.
• Ivan A. Perez, 48, of Elizabethtown in Lancaster County, for $9,950 in SNAP benefits and $12,676.48 in medical assistance fraud.
• Holly A. Barnett, 46, of Donora in Washington County, for $21,375 in SNAP fraud and $12,156.87 in medical assistance fraud.
• Laura M. Ingram, 47, of Union City in Crawford County, for $35,281 in SNAP fraud and $3,307 in LIHEAP fraud.
• Nicole M. Spagnolia, 35, of Royersford in Montgomery County, for $17,953 in SNAP fraud, $17,581 in subsidized day care fraud and $4,941.79 in cash assistance fraud.
• Patricia Fowler, 47, of Pittsburgh in Allegheny County, for $14,342 in SNAP fraud, $30,752.50 in medical assistance fraud and $11,565 in cash assistance fraud.
• Amber Olsavicky, 27, of Pittsburgh in Allegheny County, for $2,282 in SNAP fraud and $3,792 in cash assistance fraud.
• Demisha Williams, 29, of Braddock in Allegheny County, for $4,624 in SNAP fraud.
• Gina M. Cello, 24, of Blakeslee in Monroe County, for $5,039 in subsidized day care fraud.

If convicted, the maximum penalty they face is seven years in prison and a fine of $15,000, plus a mandatory disqualification period from the benefits program they defrauded.

To report suspected fraud please call the Welfare Fraud Tipline at 1-800-932-0582 or visit the OIG website at www.oig.pa.gov. Tipsters may remain anonymous.

1 comment:

  1. Wow - that is incredible. Imagine all those who are committing fraud and have not been caught. I know of two that have been reported, but sadly their investigation into them turned nothing. They laughed about it saying that as long as you sell your stamps to someone close to you like a family member you'll never get busted. They can't prove it. Such a shame because there are people who legitimately need it and these people ruin it for the people who use it as intended. It makes me sick.

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