Franklin woman among 178 people accused of welfare fraud

From staff reports

The Office of State Inspector General filed welfare fraud charges against 178 individuals, including a Franklin woman, between Jan. 1 and March 31.

Montice Robinson, 36, of Franklin, is alleged to have fraudulently received $4,097 in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits.

According to a press release from the Inspector General’s Office, the restitution owed to the commonwealth in these cases totals $886,055.54.

If convicted, the maximum penalty the defendants face is seven years in prison and a fine of $15,000, plus a mandatory disqualification period from the benefits program they allegedly defrauded, the release said.

“Our office remains vigilant to protect the integrity of our vital public assistance programs,” State Inspector General Bruce R. Beemer said in the release. “We are proud to work with our partners in law enforcement across the Commonwealth to help those in need and stop those who cheat.”

The OSIG filed 90 cases of fraudulently receiving public assistance that were graded as felonies, as well as 88 misdemeanor charges.