You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, November 17, 2014

Miami-Dade Resident Sentenced in Stolen Identity Unemployment Insurance Fraud Scheme

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Brian McGlamery, Acting Special Agent in Charge, United States Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations, and Jesse Panuccio, Executive Director, State of Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity, announce that Louidji Joseph, 31, of Miami Gardens, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge James Lawrence King to 48 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Joseph was furthered ordered to pay $56,042 in restitution.

Joseph previously entered a plea of guilty to one count of fraudulent possession of fifteen or more unauthorized access devices, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1029(a)(3), and one count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A(a)(1).

According to court records, from December 13, 2013 through April 29, 2014, the State of Florida unemployment insurance claims of more than 100 victims were accessed online from Joseph’s residence using the victims’ personally identifying information (“PII”), including their names and social security numbers. A federal search warrant was obtained for Joseph’s residence, and was executed on May 14, 2014. On that date, law enforcement discovered hundreds of pieces of PII inside the residence. In a post-Miranda statement, Joseph admitted the PII belonged to him, and further admitted he filed and collected fraudulent unemployment claims. The amount of the intended loss resulting from Joseph’s offense is $480,000; in total, $56,042 was paid out in fraudulent unemployment insurance claims as a direct result of Joseph’s actions.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the United States Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations and State of Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity. This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jamie R. Galvin.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

Updated March 19, 2015