A New Britain resident was arrested today and charged with collecting Unemployment Compensation benefits to which she was not entitled.
LAURA JEAN LaPOINTE, age 46, of Jubilee Street, New Britain, was charged with one count each of Larceny in the First Degree by Defrauding a Public Community, Unemployment Compensation Fraud and Identity Theft in the Second Degree.
The arrest is the result of an investigation conducted by the Unemployment Compensation Fraud Unit in the Chief State’s Attorney’s Office following a complaint by the Connecticut Department of Labor (CTDOL).
According to the arrest warrant affidavit, LaPointe collected approximately $9,435 in unemployment benefits between February and December 2012 under her deceased husband’s name.
LaPointe appeared in Superior Court, G.A. No. 15, New Britain, today where she was released on a $10,000 non-surety bond. Her next court appearance is scheduled for August 16, 2013.
The Unemployment Compensation Fraud Unit was established under a partnership between the Division of Criminal Justice and the Department of Labor to investigate and prosecute alleged fraud in the unemployment compensation program. It is financed with funds provided by the U.S. Department of Labor through the CTDOL.
Larceny in the First Degree by Defrauding a Public Community is a class B felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a maximum fine of $20,000. Unemployment Compensation Fraud in excess of $500 is a class D felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a maximum fine of $5,000. Identity Theft in the Second Degree is a class C felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a fine up to $10,000.
The charges are merely accusations and Ms. LaPointe is presumed innocent unless and until found guilty.