Former State Employee Admits to Stealing Over $300,000 in Benefits

close up of metal handcuffs on hundred dollar banknotes

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A former state employee has admitted to stealing over $314,000 in unemployment benefits.

In U.S. District Court yesterday, 33-year-old Tramaine Pope of the Bronx pleaded guilty to taking the money that was supposed to go to people who couldn't work due to the COVID-19 crisis. Pope used her position in the Department of Labor to submit and approve 20 phony unemployment insurance applications by getting a list of names and personal information from someone else, allowing her to carry out the fraud. Pope could be sentenced to spend the next ten years in prison but may receive a lesser term under federal sentencing guidelines.

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