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White collar crimes: Woman faces fraud charges re veterans

Michiganders who are interested in veterans' matters may have heard something about the fraud charges recently filed against a 59-year-old woman from another state. A federal grand jury indicted the woman for white collar crimes against veterans. Reportedly, the woman operated a service providing assistance and care to veterans.

Allegedly, the woman enriched herself under the guise of providing veterans with rental and contracting assistance between 2016 and 2019. She purportedly convinced veterans to complete applications for grants to do home improvements and structural alterations through a Department of Veterans Affairs program. However, officials allege she did not complete the work she promised to do, and then kept some of the grants for herself.

Allegedly, the woman opened a bank account to which she transferred funds meant for an elderly veteran. She also obtained a loan for that individual, but is accused of diverting the funds to herself, while also using the veteran's debit and credit cards without authorization. In addition, she allegedly used security deposits and rental payments of veterans that she linked with landlords for personal benefit.

Although the grand jury indicted the woman on federal fraud charges, she remains innocent in the eyes of the law unless and until prosecutors prove her guilt in court and beyond a reasonable doubt. Anyone in Michigan accused of committing white collar crimes will likely require the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney. The potential penalties for a conviction at the federal level are substantial, and as such, they require a carefully prepared and meaningful response.

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