New York Woman Pleads Guilty to Stealing Social Security Benefits

Thursday, January 16, 2020
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From the U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York:

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Jessica Pascale, age 34, of Troy, New York, pled guilty today to defrauding the Social Security Administration (SSA) by diverting and stealing the benefit payments of two minor children while she was employed as a Social Security claims representative.

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and John F. Grasso, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration, Office of the Inspector General, New York Field Office.

As part of her guilty plea, Pascale admitted that in July and September 2019, she used the SSA computer system in the SSA’s Troy office to divert two Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit payments intended for two minor children, totaling $3,309.34, into her personal bank account.  Neither the children, nor their parents, were aware of the thefts, which were discovered through internal controls at SSA.   Pascale pled guilty to four felony charges: two charges of theft of government property and two charges of fraud in connection with identification information.

At sentencing on May 20, 2020, Pascale faces up to 15 years in prison and up to 3 years of supervised release. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.

This case was investigated by the SSA Office of the Inspector General and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Adrian S. LaRochelle.