KENNER WOMAN CHARGED WITH DEFRAUDING THE LOUISIANA ROAD HOME PROGRAM
VANESSA JONES, age 56, a resident of Kenner, Louisiana, was charged in a one-count bill of information filed today for making false statements to an agency of the United States, announced U. S. Attorney Jim Letten.
According to the Bill of Information, prior to and during the time of Hurricane Katrina, JONES resided at 727 Clay Street in Kenner, Louisiana. On or about September 6, 2006, JONES applied for funds from the Louisiana Road Home program claiming her primary residence at the time of the storm was at 321 Fortier Street in Kenner, a property she knew was uninhabitable before the storm. As a result of her false statements in her application, JONES fraudulently received approximately $149,934 from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”), an agency and department of the United States.
If convicted, JONES faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five (5) years, a $250,0000 fine, restitution to HUD, and three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment.
U. S. Attorney Letten reiterated that the Bill of Information is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case was investigated by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General. 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