New attorneys to fight unemployment benefits fraud

April 24, 2012

The Associated Press

Illinois is stepping up criminal prosecution of unemployment fraud with the addition of two attorneys.

The Illinois Department of Employment Security announced Monday that two new prosecuting attorney positions have been created. The prosecutors will allow the state employment office and the Illinois attorney general's office to increase fraud prosecutions.

Illinois recovered nearly $74 million in stolen benefit payments between calendar years 2009 and 2011. More than $42 million has been collected in tax garnishments so far this year.

The new attorneys will allow Illinois to pursue criminal proceedings in cases that would have been targeted only for the recovery of the stolen benefit dollars in the past.