Welfare Fraud Task Force Announces More Arrests   

Liberty, NY – Continuing its multi-agency efforts to root out waste, fraud and abuse of local social services, the Sullivan County Welfare Fraud Task Force announces the following arrests:

• As previously reported, Scott E. Burger, 37, of Eldred was arrested November 6 and charged with the Class A Misdemeanor of Non Support of a Child. He allegedly owed $39,616 in back child support. Burger was arraigned in the Town of Liberty Court and committed to the Sullivan County Jail in lieu of $250 bail. Upon being booked into the jail, it was discovered that Burger was a Fugitive from Justice in the State of Tennessee. The defendant failed to appear in April for sentencing in Rutherford County Court on a charge of Aggravated Felony Assault. On November 8, Burger was rearrested and extradited to Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

• Christina Frankenberg, 41, of Roscoe was arrested on November 21 and charged with the Class D Felony of Welfare Fraud 3rd, Class E Felony of Welfare Fraud 4th, and Class E Felony of Offering a False Instrument for Filing 1st Degree. It is alleged that Frankenberg collected $5,478.50 in Public Assistance Benefits while she was employed at a local restaurant. Frankenberg was arraigned in the Town of Liberty Court and was released pending a future court date.

 
• Shannon Baker, 24, of the Bronx was arrested on November 28 and charged with the Class E Felony of Welfare Fraud 4th and Class E Felony of Offering a False Instrument for Filing 1st Degree. It is alleged that Baker collected $1,947 in Public Assistance Benefits while she was employed in the State of Connecticut. The investigation also revealed that she was collecting public assistance benefits in Connecticut as well. Baker was picked up by NYC Sheriffs in the Bronx and turned over to the Task Force. The defendant was arraigned in the Town of Liberty Court and remanded to the Sullivan County Jail on $5,000 bail.

• Juanita Coleman, 54, of Liberty was arrested on December 8 and charged with two counts of Misuse of Food Stamps, a Class A Misdemeanor. It is alleged that Coleman used the Electronic Benefits Card of a relative who is in state prison.  Coleman was not entitled to use the card. Coleman was released on an appearance ticket pending her appearance in Town of Liberty Court.

• Irina Prokopenko, 43, of Woodridge was arrested on December 8 and charged with the following felonies: five counts of Possession of a Forged Instrument 1st Degree, six counts of Filing a False Instrument 1st Degree, and one count of Welfare Fraud 3rd Degree. It is alleged that Prokopenko stole $10,002.86 in Public Welfare Benefits by failing to report income that she was receiving from her children’s father.  Prokopenko was arraigned in County Court and remanded to the Sullivan County Jail on $10,000 bail. During the course of this investigation, it was discovered that Prokopenko was in the U.S. illegally, and an additional detainer has been lodged at the jail by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.



* Autumn Brown, 21, of Monticello was arrested on December 11 and charged with the Class E Felonies of Welfare Fraud 4th and two counts of Offering a False Instrument for Filing 1st Degree. It is alleged that Brown failed to report income that she was receiving from her child’s father.  Brown was released on an appearance ticket pending her appearance in Town of Liberty Court. This arrest was the result of a joint investigation between the Sullivan County Welfare Fraud Task Force and the New York State Office of Medicaid Inspector General.

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