Jacksonville Woman Indicted For Wire Fraud Related To The Deepwater Horizon Gulf Oil Spill
Jacksonville, FL - U.S. Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announced today that a federal grand jury in Jacksonville has returned an indictment charging Patrina Lott (37, Jacksonville) with eight counts of wire fraud, arising out of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico. If convicted, Lott faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count. The indictment also notifies Lott that the United States intends to forfeit $91,912.38, which is alleged to be traceable to proceeds of the offense.
According to the indictment, Lott was an employee of the Gulf Coast Claims Facility ("GCCF") call center in Jacksonville. The GCCF had been established to review and process claims for damages arising out of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. The indictment alleges that Lott used her position as a GCCF employee to falsely cause the reissue, via wire transfers, of previously issued genuine oil spill claims to bank accounts in Jacksonville, to which she had access.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
The case was investigated by the United States Secret Service and will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kathleen O'Malley.