CSAO: Branford Man Charged with Attempting To Scam Labor Department of Unemployment Benefits

Branford Man Charged with Attempting To Scam Labor Department of Unemployment Benefits

A Branford man was arrested today and charged with using a bogus court document in an attempt to avoid being penalized and denied Unemployment Compensation because of his previous misconduct in collecting benefits.

ANDRE A. SMITH, age 36, of 195 Peddlers Drive, Branford, was arrested by Inspectors from the Unemployment Compensation Fraud Unit in the Office of the Chief State’s Attorney and charged with one count each of Criminal Attempt to Commit Larceny in the First Degree by Defrauding a Public Community and Forgery in the Second Degree.

The arrest is the result of an investigation into a complaint by the Connecticut Department of Labor (DOL), which administers the Unemployment Compensation program.

According to the arrest warrant affidavit, Smith filed a claim for unemployment benefits but the labor department withheld payment to satisfy $5,175 in penalties and fees that he was assessed after he had previously collected benefits to which he was not entitled.

Smith subsequently submitted an altered court document to the Labor Department falsely contending that a judge had ruled he did not have to pay the penalties, the warrant states.

Smith was released on a $10,000 non-surety bond and is scheduled to appear in New Britain Superior Court, G.A. No. 15, on April 20, 2017. The charges are merely accusations and he is presumed innocent unless and until he is found guilty.

Criminal Attempt to Commit Larceny in the First Degree by Defrauding a Public Community is a Class B felony punishable by not less than one year nor more than 20 years in prison and/or up to a $15,000 fine. Forgery in the Second Degree is a Class D felony punishable by not less than 1 year nor more than 5 years in prison and/or up to a $5,000 fine.

The case is being prosecuted by the Unemployment Compensation Fraud Unit, which was established under a partnership between the Division of Criminal Justice and the Department of Labor to investigate and prosecute fraud in the Unemployment Compensation program. It is financed with funds provided by the U.S. Department of Labor.



Content Last Modified on 4/13/2017 1:50:40 PM