District Attorney Hoovler Joins County Executive Neuhaus and Sheriff DuboisAnnounce Countywide Public Benefits Fraud Arrests
Twenty-Four Defendants Charged with Stealing over $240,000 in Welfare, Food Stamps, Medicaid and Other Public Assistance Benefits
Total Fraud Prosecuted Since These Actions Began in 2014 is Over One and One-Half Million Dollars
Goshen, NY – Orange County District Attorney David M. Hoovler, joined by Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus and Sheriff Carl DuBois, today announced that twenty-four defendants have been charged with Welfare Fraud for illegally obtaining over $242,000 in public assistance benefits administered through the Orange County Department of Social Services.
The enforcement action was the result of the collaborative efforts of the Orange County Department of Social Services Special Investigations Unit (SIU), the Sheriff’s Office and the District Attorney’s Office. During the investigation of the cases, Department of Social Services investigators reviewed files of public assistance benefit recipients suspected of fraud, interviewed recipients, and forwarded cases to the District Attorney’s Office for further investigation. Investigators from the District Attorney’s Office and Sheriff’s Office interviewed many of the recipients before arresting them.
This public benefits fraud enforcement action is the fifth one since District Attorney Hoovler and County Executive Neuhaus took office. To date, 146 individuals have been charged with Welfare Fraud as a result of the five public benefits fraud enforcement actions. The total dollar amount of the fraud involved in the cases is $1,547,573.49. To date, the County has been repaid approximately $420,076.76 by criminal defendants who were charged in the enforcement actions.
Since the actions began in June 2014, the Department of Social Services has also collected $189,723.77 from recipients who voluntarily paid back benefits that they received but were not entitled to. Those recipients repaid those funds after being contacted by the Department of Social Services civil investigators, without any additional arrest or prosecutorial action by the Sheriff’s Office or the District Attorney’s Office.