Federal authorities charge a Lancaster City woman with stealing 10’s of thousands of dollars from the Social Security Administration. The United States Attorney says 61-year-old Maria Rodano, schemed to collect SS Retirement, Survivors and Disability benefits intended for her grandmother. Rodano’s grandmother died December 29, 1971. But the Social Security Administration was not informed of her death.
The U.S. Attorney says Rodano’s mother, who died in or about April 2004, continued to collect the SS benefit check intended for the grandmother. In April 2004,. Rodano obtained access to her deceased grandmother’s bank account where the grandmother’s benefit check was electronically deposited. She was not entitled to the benefit.
The scheme began to unravel when Rodano applied on or about July 2007, for Supplement Security Income, SSI, for herself. In her application, she fraudulently concealed and failed to report the entirety of her income, specifically that she was receiving her grandmothers’ SS check. She was approved for SSI benefits and received approximately $5,282 in SSI payments between July 2007 and April 2008. Authorities say that from April 2004 and continuing through December 2011, Rodano collected approximately $86,778 in SSA benefits, of which $81, 516 was intended for her deceased grandmother.
The federal government is seeking to recover as much of stolen money as it can plus any property purchased with the money. If convicted, Rodano faces up to 10 years in prison, 3 years of supervised release, a $250,000 fine plus restitution and a $100 special assessment.