Former Richmond case worker pleads guilty in fraud case

June 23, 2021 GMT

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A former case worker with the Richmond Department of Social Services has pleaded guilty to mail fraud in connection with a scam that diverted more than $13,000 in benefits intended for a woman killed in a car crash, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Richmond said in a news release that De’Nisha Juanita Wilson, 47, of Richmond faces up to 20 years in prison when she is sentenced on Oct. 18. She entered her plea on Tuesday.

According to court documents, in May 2019, one of Wilson’s clients, a young woman who was receiving benefits on behalf of five children, died in a car accident. Following the woman’s death, Wilson accessed the deceased woman’s personal identifying information, leading to new prepaid benefits cards being directed to Wilson, the news release said.

Wilson spent approximately $8,000 on food, entertainment, and other personal expenses, the news release said, adding that the scheme was ended in January 2020.