California Prison Inmates Steal $400M of Unemployment Benefits

California has misappropriated over $400 million in fraudulent unemployment benefits, directing it to some 20,800 inmates in prison.

California Prison Inmates Steal $400M of Unemployment Benefits

California has misappropriated over $400 million in fraudulent unemployment benefits, directing it to some 20,800 inmates in prison. Nine district attorneys and a U.S. Attorney has alleged that the state is impeding their investigation into the matter.

Prosecutors have disclosed that much of the fraud was perpetrated through accomplices who helped inmates to illegally acquire the benefits and then funnel the money into state prisons.

Riverside County District Attorney Michael Hestrin said that inmates have been recorded on phone calls bragging about how much money they and their families were receiving from the state.

“We’re continuing to uncover more fraud, and the scale of it is frankly stunning,” Hestrin said.

Prosecutors involved in the case also said that the state Employment Development Department (EDD) have hindered the investigation.

Crystal Page, spokeswoman for the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, stated $400 million in illegally gotten benefits were paid out between the months of March and August.

The payments include the California’s $450 weekly benefit, a $600 weekly federal benefit distributed for four months, and a $300 weekly federal benefit administered for six weeks.

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