California woman pleads guilty to unemployment fraud after stop in Las Vegas

Local News

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A 38-year-old California woman pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges that she fraudulently applied for more than a quarter-million dollars in unemployment insurance benefits.

Brittany Danielle Griesel pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and one count of aggravated identity theft, according to a news release from the office of Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Nevada Christopher Chiou.

Griesel, of Santa Clarita, Calif., was caught in possession of more than $45,000 from the conspiracy during a traffic stop in Las Vegas on Aug. 8, 2020, according to court documents. Most of the money from the conspiracy was spent.

The conspiracy targeted California’s Employment Development Department (EDD), and used other people’s personal identifying information to secure the benefits.

U.S. District Judge Richard F. Boulware II has scheduled sentencing for Nov. 9. Griesel faces a statutory maximum penalty of nine and a half years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

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 Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via the NCDF web complaint form at: https://www.justice.gov/disaster-fraud/ncdf-disaster-complaint-form.

Acting U.S. Attorney Christopher Chiou for the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Quentin Heiden of the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General (DOL-OIG), Los Angeles region made the announcement.

This case was investigated by the DOL-OIG. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jim Fang is prosecuting the case.

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