A Union County man admitted Monday that he stole $450,000 in pandemic unemployment insurance benefits from New York State by using other people's identities.
Maurice Mills, 29, of Union Township took a deal from the government rather than face trial, pleading guilty to wire fraud during a video conference with a federal judge in Newark.
Mills admitted that he submitted the bogus applications last year for the benefits, funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, "using the names of other individuals," Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig said.
U.S. District Judge Brian Martinotti scheduled sentencing for Feb. 2, 2022.
Honig credited special agents of the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General in Manhattan, as well as Newark-based special agents of the FBI, postal inspectors of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and special agents of the U.S. Secret Service.
She also thanked the New York State Department of Labor, Office of Special Investigations for its assistance in the investigation.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Kogan of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Cybercrime Unit in Newark is handling the case for the government.
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