News and Press Releases

Verona Woman Charged with Stealing Minor Child's Social Security Disability Payments

June 28, 2012

PITTSBURGH, Pa. - A resident of Verona, Pennsylvania, has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on a charge of theft of government property, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

The one-count indictment, returned on June 26, named Deborah Mazza, 45, as the sole defendant.

According to the indictment presented to the court, Mazza was the Representative Payee for the Social Security Disability payments of a minor child. Instead of using the payments for the benefit of the minor child, however, Mazza unlawfully used the entire amount of the benefits over a seven-year period for herself, having never given the minor child any of the benefits to which she was entitled. The total amount of benefit payments stolen by Mazza was $9,287.00.

The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney Tonya Sulia Goodman is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Office of the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case.

An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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