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​Fraud Stoppers in PA

The Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry takes unemployment fraud seriously and is committed to monitoring, identifying, and stopping fraudsters in their tracks. L&I utilizes numerous fraud-detection measures and works with the National Unemployment Insurance Fraud Task Force and other partners, including the FBI, Homeland Security and additional law enforcement agencies, the PA Treasury, and the state attorney general's office, to identify and block new fraud methods and stop fraud attempts.

If you are a victim of unemployment fraud, have received benefits in your name that you did not apply for, or know of anyone receiving unemployment benefits illegally, please visit our Report Fraud page to get started.

To access L&I press releases, please access the Labor & Industry Newsroom.


Feds Charge 19 Defendants with Pandemic Fraud of over $24 Million

June 22, 2022

PHILADELPHIA - United States Attorney Jacqueline C. Romero, together with other federal law enforcement officials announced today charges against 19 defendants for defrauding federal programs funded by the CARES Act and designed to provide a financial safety net for Americans during the pandemic.  Collectively these defendants sought to defraud the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, and the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program of over $24 million.

Learn more >

Five Out-of-State Residents Charged in Defrauding PA's PUA Program

February 15, 2022

HARRISBURG – Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced today that financial crimes agents from the Office of Attorney General, in coordination with federal and local law enforcement, arrested five individuals for allegedly conspiring to provide false information in an attempt to illegally obtain Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) Act. Three targets are expected to be charged within the next week and one remains at large.

Read More: Five Out-of-State Residents Charged

Philadelphia Woman Charged with Money Laundering and Stealing Federal Funds

January 14, 2022

PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Myrna Ortiz, 43, of Philadelphia, PA, was charged in a 32-count Indictment in connection with a conspiracy to steal and conceal the origin of fraudulently obtained Social Security benefits and COVID-19 PUA unemployment benefits. The Indictment charges Ortiz with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering and 31 counts of theft of government funds. She made her initial appearance in federal court on these charges earlier today.

Read More: Philadelphia Woman Charged






Luzerne County Woman Sentenced for Methamphetamine Trafficking and Pandemic Fraud Offenses

January 6, 2022

SCRANTON – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Christina Covey, age 34, formerly of Drums, Pennsylvania, was sentenced by United States District Judge Malachy E. Mannion, to 48 months’ imprisonment for methamphetamine trafficking, and 15 months’ imprisonment for committing pandemic unemployment fraud, five months of which is to run consecutive to the methamphetamine trafficking sentence.

Read More: Luzerne Woman Sentenced

Chester County Man Sentenced to 1.5 Years in Prison for Stealing Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Funds

December 2, 2021

PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Jacob Fulton,
33, of Coatesville, PA, was sentenced to one year and six months in prison, five years of supervised
release, and ordered to pay full restitution by United States District Judge Eduardo C. Robreno for
falsely claiming and taking approximately $32,000 in pandemic unemployment compensation
authorized by the CARES Act.

Read More: Chester County Man Sentenced





Lebanon County Man Pleads Guilty To Fraudulently Obtaining Pandemic Unemployment Assistance

December 1, 2021

HARRISBURG – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that on November 30, 2021, Luis Mercado, age 44, of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, pled guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Sylvia H. Rambo, to wire fraud for fraudulently claiming pandemic unemployment assistance funds.

Read More: Lebanon County Man Pleads Guilty

Two Federal Inmates Charged with Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Fraud

September 22, 2021

SCRANTON – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Christina Covey, age 34, formerly of Drums, Pennsylvania, and Fredy Mendoza, age 33, formerly of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, were charged yesterday by a federal grand jury with fraudulently obtaining pandemic unemployment benefits between July and October 2020.

Read More: Two Federal Inmates Charged







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Fraud in the News Archive