Philadelphia Woman Charged with Using Her Dead Grandmother's Survivor Benefits
Doris Whitfield Richardson, 59, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was charged today by Indictment with multiple counts of theft of government money and wire fraud, as well as one charge of Social Security fraud, announced United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. The indictment alleges that Whitfield Richardson converted her deceased grandmother’s Office of Personnel Management and Department of Veteran’s Affairs survivor benefits after her grandmother died in 1986. In order to do so, the indictment alleges that the defendant engaged in a long-running scheme that included opening a P.O. Box and bank accounts in her deceased grandmother’s name. Additionally, Whitfield Richardson failed to report this income when she applied for benefits from the Social Security Administration and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The total loss to the government is approximately $222,000.
If convicted of all charges, the defendant faces a potential sentencing guideline range of 27 to 46 months in prison and a maximum fine of $3.25 million.
The case was investigated by the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General, the Office of Personnel Management Office of Inspector General, the Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General, the Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General, the Philadelphia Housing Authority Office of Audit and Compliance, and the U.S. Secret Service. It is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Amanda R. Reinitz.
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, EASTERN DISTRICTof PENNSYLVANIA
Suite 1250, 615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106
PATTY HARTMAN, Media Contact, 215-861-8525