LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Three Florida women were sentenced this week to federal prison time for defrauding California’s unemployment system.
Bonia and Bonize Bon, 32-year-old twin sisters from North Miami, and 32-year-old Eldia Dieujuste of Miami, were each sentenced Monday to a year and a day in federal prison. They were also ordered to pay $104,570 in restitution to the California Employment Development Department.READ MORE: Hollywood Christmas Parade Makes Triumphant Return To Streets of LA
Federal prosecutors said the three women stole “monies that were intended to be used to help persons who had lost their jobs through no fault of their own” by exploiting “the mechanisms put in place by EDD to help unemployed workers more easily apply for these benefits – for example, on-line applications and rapid processing of applications.”READ MORE: BTS Kicks Off Second Of 4 Shows At SoFi Stadium In Inglewood
The Bons and Dieujuste each pleaded guilty last year to mail fraud in connection with the case, according to the Department of Justice. Investigators say they used the personal information of California residents to file 34 fraudulent claims seeking at least $494,190 in unemployment benefits. Debit cards giving them access to $104,570 in unemployment benefits were mailed to their Florida homes, and federal officials say they were captured on ATM surveillance photos using the debit cards withdraw cash.MORE NEWS: Alhambra Ice-Cream Shop Victim Of Smash-And-Grab Burglary Early Saturday Morning
A fourth South Florida man, 29-year-old Gregory Bon – the twin sisters’ brother – faces conspiracy and mail fraud in this scheme. He has pleaded not guilty and is scheduled to go on trial on Dec. 14.