A Voorhees NJ woman recently pleaded guilty to committing fraud by accepting more than $20K in disaster funding related to Hurricane Sandy relief.
According to federal prosecutors, the suspect claimed that she needed the Hurricane Sandy disaster funding in order to cover the costs of a home rental and relocation, as well as transportation-related costs. The suspect claimed that her residence in Ocean City had been damaged, leaving her displaced and in need of aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The suspect also sought monetary assistance because, she claimed, her Volva station wagon had been destroyed by the storm.
However, the suspect’s claims were reportedly fraudulent because she did not maintain a primary residence in an area that was damaged by the hurricane. Moreover, the suspect’s car was not damaged in the storm, said prosecutors.
Court records indicate that the suspect did have a residence in Ocean City, but her primary residence was in Voorhees Township in Camden County, NJ.
The suspect managed to get $13,373 in housing assistance funds and $7,500 in transportation assistance funds from FEMA – for a total of $20,873.
Now the 53-year-old suspect, who lives in Voorhees, New Jersey, is set to face prison time after pleading guilty to a criminal charge of committing disaster benefits fraud.
The suspect will have to return to U.S. District Court in June 2016 for sentencing. When the suspect is sentenced, she faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in federal prison, in addition to a fine of $250,000.
For more information about this case, check out the NJ.com article, “N.J. Woman Admits Fraudulently Taking Hurricane Sandy Aid.”