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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Erie Woman Charged with Providing a False Document to Obtain Government Benefits

ERIE, Pa. - A resident of Erie, Pennsylvania has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Erie on a charge of false writing or document to the government, Acting United States Attorney Soo C. Song announced today.

The one-count indictment named Lana Talisha Thillet, 36, of Erie, Pennsylvania, as the sole defendant.

According to the indictment presented to the court, on or about August 26, 2016, Thillet knowingly used a false document that contained a fraudulent statement to represent that a minor child receiving Social Security Income (SSI) and auxiliary insurance benefits was residing with the defendant and that all of the $8,976.00 in SSI and auxiliary insurance benefits were used for the care and support of the minor child. Ms. Thillet well knew that the minor child did not reside with her and the $8,796.00 was not used for the care and support of the minor child.

The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 5 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 Marshall J. Piccinini is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General, 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.

Updated November 14, 2017