Informational: Federal Court Arraignments
Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Billings, on October 22, 2009, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Carolyn S. Ostby, the following individuals were arraigned:
HAROLD RICHARD HOFMANN, a 67-year-old resident of Shepherd, appeared on charges of Social Security fraud and theft of government monies. He is currently released on special conditions. If convicted of these charges, HOFMANN faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica T. Fehr is the prosecutor for the United States. The investigation was a cooperative effort between the U.S. Postal Service - Office of Inspector General and the Social Security Administration - Office of Inspector General.
VICTOR PAUL ANDIA, a 24-year-old citizen of Peru, appeared on a charge of conspiracy to pass counterfeit currency. He is currently detained. If convicted of this charge, ANDIA faces possible penalties of 15 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan M. Archer is the prosecutor for the United States. The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Secret Service.
The defendants pled not guilty to the charges.
The charge, an indictment, information or complaint, is merely an accusation and all persons named as defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. A pre-trial conference and a trial date will be set and the United States will be required to prove the allegations set forth in the indictment beyond a reasonable doubt.