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Former Dept. of Unemployment Assistance worker sentenced to 42 months in federal prison for COVID-19 relief fraud

The total loss associated with claims Tiffany Pacheco made using stolen identify information came to $159,922.


A former Department of Unemployment Assistance employee was sentenced Wednesday in US District Court in Boston to 42 months in federal prison for misusing her position to illegally obtain nearly $160,000 in pandemic unemployment assistance, the US Attorney’s office for Massachusetts said.

Tiffany Pacheco, 36, a former New Bedford resident, pleaded guilty in August to six counts of wire fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and one count of aggravated identity theft, US Attorney Rachael Rollins’s office said in a statement Thursday.

“Ms. Pacheco violated the public’s trust by egregiously abusing her position as a DUA employee to perpetrate a fraud scheme that stole personal information from innocent victims and stole money from hardworking taxpayers,” Rollins said in the statement.

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