32 charged with cheating on unemployment claims - Philadelphia News, Weather and Sports from WTXF FOX 29

32 charged with cheating on unemployment claims

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Thirty-two area residents face federal charges of fraudulently obtaining thousands of dollars each in unemployment benefits from the state of Illinois.

Those charged either falsely claimed to be unemployed or underreported their income to collect more, according to federal indictments announced Wednesday. Defendants fraudulently received between $19,399 and $38,798 each.

The total loss for the Illinois Department of Employment Security came to nearly $874,000, the U.S. Attorney's office alleged in the separate indictments. Of the defendants, 27 face felony charges of theft of federal funds; and five face misdemeanor fraud charges.

The investigation concluded Jan. 22 and involved the U.S. Attorney's office, U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Postal Service.

In each case, restitution is mandatory; the felony charges carry a maximum of 10 years in prison and $250,000 fine, while the misdemeanors carry a maximum of a year in prison and $100,000 fine.

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