IDES director's statement following federal indictment of
$8.7 million in unemployment insurance fraud
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[April 19, 2012]
CHICAGO -- Jay Rowell, director of the
Illinois Department of Employment Security, issued the following
statement Wednesday after U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office
announced criminal charges alleging unemployment insurance fraud.
The IDES brought the case to federal prosecutors and provided
detailed analysis critical to the investigation and subsequent
The Department of
Employment Security officially is considered a victim in this case,
but the real crime is against the millions of hard-working
Illinoisans and the business owners who employ them. The allegations
that a few individuals connived to line their pockets at the expense
of others down on their luck is outrageous.
insurance payments help families across the state when they need it
the most. The dollars are spent in local groceries, corner gas
stations, and neighborhood stores, further helping that local
economy. Those benefit dollars are paid for by the business owners
in our state, who realize a robust safety net helps workers and
small businesses in challenging economic times. Benefit fraud
actually harms our recovery and must not be tolerated.
I applaud Mr.
Fitzgerald and his staff for their hard work and perseverance in
this wide-ranging scandal. The IDES will continue to use every
available tool, and create new ones when appropriate, to protect
taxpayer dollars and put our residents back to work.
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Federal prosecutors allege 15 individuals schemed to defraud the
IDES and others of $8.7 million. Had the fraud not been identified,
the loss for IDES could have reached $30 million. Specifics of the
criminal investigation and prosecution should be directed to
Department of Employment Security
file received from
Illinois Office of
Communication and Information]