06/19/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/19/2017 13:25
6/19/2017 2:00:00 PM
Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy and Albany County Sheriff Craig D. Apple Sr. today announced the arrest of two county residents on fraud charges for allegedly receiving thousands of dollars of Medicaid benefits and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Payments (SNAP) they were not entitled to. The two were among five people recently charged for fraudulently receiving benefits from the Department of Social Services.
Among those charged is Thanh Truong, of Latham, who allegedly received $72,752 in benefits illegally. He is charged with second-degree grand larceny, second-degree welfare fraud and offering a false instrument for filing. The investigation conducted by the Department of Social Services found that Truong fraudulently obtained benefits by misreporting his income and not disclosing that he was employed by the State Department of Taxation and Finance.
In another case, Denise Mitchell of Albany was charged with third-degree grand larceny, third-degree welfare fraud and offering a false instrument for filing for illegally obtaining $32,589 in Medicaid and SNAP benefits. It is alleged that Mitchell failed to correctly report her household income to the county Department of Social Services and claimed that she took measures to hide her income from creditors.
'Our DSS investigators work diligently to uncover waste and fraud and these cases show that their efforts yield results,' said McCoy. 'We work hard to make sure that only those who need assistance receive it and we will not tolerate those who seek to game the system.'
As government officials we need to do all we can to preserve the welfare system for the folks who need it most when they are struggling, said Albany County Sheriff Craig D. Apple, Sr. 'Although these cases demonstrate our dedication to preserving the system, it also exploits how vulnerable the system is to fraud. We have work to do, and we will continue to investigate vigorously.'
Since 2012, the DSS Welfare Fraud Unit has conducted numerous investigations and has uncovered more than $1.8 million in fraudulent overpayments to individual illegally seeking benefits.
Also charged in this latest round of cases were:
In all these cases, all the charges are accusations and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.