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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Pennsylvania

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Newfoundland Woman Charged With Bankruptcy Fraud

SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Linda Ferris, age 55, of Newfoundland, Pennsylvania, was charged in a criminal information filed in U.S. District Court in Scranton charging her with knowingly making a false statement during her bankruptcy case.


According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, Ferris filed for bankruptcy in July 2013 and did not disclose all of her assets. The information alleges that at a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy hearing in Wilkes-Barre in September 2013, Ferris testified falsely under oath that her bankruptcy schedules were accurate and that she had disclosed all of her assets when, in fact, she knew that she received approximately $194,000, which was not listed on her bankruptcy schedules.


The charges stem from an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Trustee’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Evan Gotlob is prosecuting the case.


The government also filed a plea agreement signed by the defendant which is subject to the approval of the court.


Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.


A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.


The maximum penalty under federal law is five years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a maximum fine of $250,000. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated February 15, 2017