HAMMOND WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO DEFRAUDING AMERICAN RED CROSS
KEYONA DALTON, age 27, a resident of Hammond, Louisiana, pled guilty in federal court yesterday before U. S. District Judge Lance M. Africk to one count of wire fraud related to fraudulent applications she made to the American Red Cross for financial assistance during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten.
According to court documents, the American Red Cross made disaster assistance money of up to $1,565 available to those affected by the hurricanes of 2005 on a one-time only basis. The defendant admitted that on four (4) occasions between September 16, 2005 and October 6, 2005, she applied for and received disaster assistance funds from the Red Cross, each time representing that she had not received assistance in the past. Based on the fraudulent applications, DALTON obtained $3,495.00 from the American Red Cross that she was not entitled to.
DALTON faces a possible maximum term of imprisonment of twenty (20) years, a $250,000 fine and up to three (3) years supervised release following any term of imprisonment. Sentencing has been scheduled for September 2, 2010.
This investigation was conducted by U. S. Postal Inspection Service. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Julia K. Evans.
If you believe you have been a victim of fraud from a person or an organization soliciting relief funds on behalf of storm victims or have knowledge of waste, abuse, or allegations of mismanagement involving disaster relief operations, contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud toll free at: (866) 720-5721. You can also fax information to: (225) 334-4707 or e-mail it to: firstname.lastname@example.org