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County Uncovers Welfare Fraud Cases

Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano announced last week that the Nassau County Department of Social Services (DSS) Office of Investigations continues to uncover individuals attempting to defraud Nassau County taxpayers, most recently discovering thirteen elaborate schemes to cheat the system out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Since April 2011, Nassau DSS has identified more than $3.7 million in savings and has referred a total of 68 cases that resulted in arrests.  

Included in most recent cases referred for prosecution are a 37-year-old Jericho travel agent lied about her income, employment and household composition in order to illegally qualify for $12,166 in Medicaid benefits - referral from NYS Office of Medicaid Inspector General.

County Executive Mangano stated: “Those who steal money from the neediest of our citizens will be caught, prosecuted and have jail time sought for the crimes they commit.”

All thirteen cases have been referred to the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office for criminal fraud prosecution, including full restitution. So far in 2013, 30 cases of fraud, waste and abuse totaling more than $888,000 have been referred for prosecution.

“Public assistance programs are designed to help our communities’ most vulnerable members, and those who defraud the system stealing from every taxpayer,” Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice said. “I created a Public Assistance Fraud Unit for prosecute just these kinds of cases so that our social safety net is there to lift those with true needs and to ensure those who abuse the system are caught and held accountable. I thank the County Executive and the Department of Social Service Office of Investigations for bringing these important cases which we will prosecute aggressively.”

DSS Commissioner John Imhof added, “People who attempt to defraud the system will get caught and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. This conduct will not be tolerated in Nassau County.”  

“Nassau County is committed to stamping out waste, fraud and abuse,” added DSS Director of Investigations Scott Skrynecki. “We use combination of sophisticated technology and traditional investigative techniques to detect and prevent fraud and we will continue our vigilance to protect the integrity of the public assistance system.”

To report questionable practices in programs such as Medicaid, Day Care, Food Stamps, Public Assistance and Family Health Plus, call 1-877-711-TIPS (8477). All calls are completely confidential and callers can remain anonymous.