New Orleans Woman Pleads Guilty to Theft of More Than $88,000 in Government Funds
From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Louisiana
NEW ORLEANS, LA – ALINE JAMES, a/k/a “Aline Foster” (“JAMES”),age 51, of New Orleans, Louisiana, pled guilty yesterday to Theft of Government Funds, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 641, announced U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans.
By pleading guilty, the defendant faces a maximum penalty of ten (10) years of imprisonment, up to three (3) years of supervised release, a fine of up to $250,000, and a mandatory special assessment fee of $100. United States District Judge Jane Triche Milazzo set the sentencing hearing in this matter for December 13, 2023.
According to the indictment, beginning in or around September 2012, and continuing until in or around December 2020, JAMES collected approximately $88,298.00 in Social Security Administration and Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES ACT”) funds to which she was not entitled.
On May 17, 2021, the Attorney General established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to marshal the resources of the Department of Justice in partnership with agencies across government to enhance efforts to combat and prevent pandemic-related fraud. The Task Force bolsters efforts to investigate and prosecute the most culpable domestic and international criminal actors and assists agencies tasked with administering relief programs to prevent fraud by, among other methods, augmenting and incorporating existing coordination mechanisms, identifying resources and techniques to uncover fraudulent actors and their schemes, and sharing and harnessing information and insights gained from prior enforcement efforts. For more information on the Department’s response to the pandemic, please visit https://www.justice.gov/coronavirus.
Anyone with information about allegations of attempted fraud involving COVID-19 can report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF Web Complaint Form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.
U.S. Attorney Evans praised the work of the Social Security Administration, Office of the Inspector General. The prosecution of this case is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Maria Carboni of the Financial Crimes Unit.