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Justice News

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

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Monticello Woman Sentenced To Two Years For Social Security Fraud

Madison, Wis. - John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Kimberly Costa-Spohn, 47, Monticello, Wis., was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb to 24 months in federal prison, followed by three years supervised release, for social security fraud. Costa-Spohn was also ordered to pay $15,842.00 in restitution to the Social Security Administration (SSA). Costa-Spohn pleaded guilty to this charge on January 10, 2013.

Costa-Spohn began receiving representative payee benefits for her son in 2001. In 2005, Costa-Spohn lost custody of her son, who was placed in foster care. Costa-Spohn continued to receive representative payee benefits for her son and maintained receipt of these payments through SSA payee representative reports in which she falsely claimed that her son lived with her and that all of the benefits were spent or saved for her son.

Costa-Spohn was eventually jailed on state charges for failing to pay Green County Human Services for her son’s care. This incarceration prompted a report from the Green County Sheriff to the SSA that Costa-Spohn was incarcerated. The SSA provided notice to Costa-Spohn in jail that the representative payee benefits were being suspended. Costa-Spohn wrote back to the SSA that she would be out of jail soon, that her son remained at her residence with her long-time, live-in boyfriend and her adult son, and that 100% of the benefits went to her son’s care.

The SSA reinstated benefits that Costa-Spohn continued to spend on herself. Subsequent inquiry by the SSA Inspector General to Green County Human Services revealed that Costa-Spohn had not cared for her son since 2005. Costa-Spohn was confronted and admitted that she had lied to the SSA and had used the money for herself.

The charges against Kimberly Costa-Spohn were the result of an investigation conducted by the Social Security Administration Inspector General and the Green County Sheriff's Office. The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Burke.

Updated July 14, 2015