JEFFERSON PARISH WOMAN SENTENCED FOR DEFRAUDING THE LOUISIANA ROAD HOME PROGRAM
CECILE PAYNE, age 65, a resident of Jefferson Parish, was sentenced today by U. S. District Judge Ivan Lemelle to serve three (3) years probation for defrauding the Louisiana Road Home Program, announced United States Attorney Jim Letten. In addition to the term of probation, Judge Lemelle ordered PAYNE to make full restitution to the government.
According to court documents, prior to and during the time of Hurricane Katrina, PAYNE resided in her primary residence in Harvey, Louisiana. In 2005, PAYNE applied for funds from the Louisiana Road Home Program, claiming that a rental property that she owned, located in New Orleans, Louisiana, was her primary residence at the time of the storm. As a result of her application, PAYNE received approximately $102,718.00 in Louisiana Road Home Program funds to which she was not entitled.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office and Inspector General, and was prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Spiro Latsis.
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