Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Three Atlantic County Employees Including Galloway Resident Charged with Theft

MAYS LANDING – Three Atlantic County employees have been charged with theft in connection with defrauding the State of hundreds of dollars in welfare benefits following Tropical Storm Irene, Acting Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain announced today.
On July 30, the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Financial Crimes Unit issued summonses for theft to three employees of the Atlantic County Department of Family & Community Development.
Following Tropical Storm Irene, the State of New Jersey in conjunction with Atlantic County conducted a quality assurance review into the administration of the Disaster Food Stamps Program (D-SNAP/Food Stamps) – a program intended to provide food stamp benefits to many households which would not ordinarily be eligible but suddenly need food assistance. 

The benefits are administered through the Atlantic County Department of Family & Community Development, where all three defendants were employed.

Following the quality assurance review, several alleged frauds were identified and forwarded to the Prosecutor’s Office for further investigation.
Investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office Financial Crimes Unit revealed that Jocelyn Roberts, 58, of Atlantic City, Rheba Lawrence, 77, of Pleasantville, and Janice Dorsey, 51, of Galloway, had all submitted various forms of falsified information in order to receive benefits they were not eligible for.
The charges allege that Roberts falsified an affidavit that she had lost an excess of $500 in food which she had not and unlawfully collected $526 in benefits that she was not entitled to.
Dorsey falsely reported the number of household members residing in her home during the time period as required by the State and therefore received $526 in aid she was not entitled to.
Lawrence falsified her total income by failing to report social security income and unlawfully received $793 in aid she was not entitled to.
All three defendants were charged with third-degree theft and served with summonses to appear in court.
Theft in the third-degree carries a prison sentence of between three to five years in New Jersey State Prison and up to $15,000 in fines. There is a presumption of noncustodial sentences on third degree offenses.
Welfare Fraud can be anonymously reported to the Atlantic County Department of Family & Community Development – Fraud Investigation Unit by calling the 24-hour Fraud Hotline at: 1-800-FRAUD05 (1-800-372-8305).
***These charges are merely an accusation and not proof of guilt. In all criminal cases, a charged defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
Anyone with information involving serious crimes is asked to call the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office at 609-909-7800 or go to the Prosecutor’s Office Web site at and provide information by filling out the form anonymously on the Submit a Tip page. People can also call Crime Stoppers at 609-652-1234 or 1-800-658-8477 (TIPS) or visit the Crime Stoppers Website at Crime Stoppers offers cash rewards for information leading to the arrest and indictment of those who commit crimes in Atlantic County.


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