United States Attorney John L. Ratcliffe
Eastern District of Texas
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: DAVILYN WALSTON
THURSDAY, APRIL 24, 2008 PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
WWW.USDOJ.GOV/USAO/txe PHONE: (409) 839-2538 CELL: (409) 553-9881
BEAUMONT MAN GETS FEDERAL PRISON SENTENCE FOR HURRICANE FRAUD
BEAUMONT TX – United States Attorney John L. Ratcliffe announced that a 44-year-old Beaumont man has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to federal prison for hurricane-related fraud in the Eastern District of Texas.
DEMITRI LEE DAVIS was indicted by a federal grand jury on September 6, 2007 and charged with making a false statement to FEMA in connection with an application he filed for federal disaster relief. He pleaded guilty to those charges today and was sentenced to 7 months in federal prison by United States District Judge Thad Heartfield.
According to information presented in court, beginning in October 2005, Davis filed a claim with FEMA in which he requested Disaster Housing and Individual Assistance for losses he reportedly suffered from Hurricane Rita, although he did not suffer those losses. Davis received $2,000.00 in assistance as a result of his fictitious claims.
In September 2005, the U.S. Department of Justice created the Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force, designed to deter, investigate and prosecute disaster-related federal crimes such as charity fraud, identity theft, procurement fraud and insurance fraud. The Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force – chaired by Assistant Attorney General Alice S. Fisher of the Criminal Division – includes members of the FBI, the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, among others.
This case is being investigated by the United States Postal Service and the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Randall L. Fluke.
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