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Tacoma woman sentenced for filing 15 fraudulent disability claims in California

Court documents say that Stubblefield helped file 15 fake disability claims, taking in about $373,566.

SACRAMENTO, Calif — A resident of Tacoma, Wash., has been sentenced to two years and six months in prison for filing fraudulent claims for disability insurance benefits in California

Angela Stubblefield, 49, was sentenced on Monday, Nov. 9, by U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Meuller. In addition to her prison sentence, Stubblefield will need to pay $219,871 in restitution. 

Stubblefield worked with another defendant, Katherine Decker, for the California Employment Development Department (EDD). According to court documents, Decker and Stubblefield used Decker's position to file multiple claims for disability insurance benefits between 2013 and 2017. The two also illegally extended existing disability claims, using the names and identities of real people. This is also known as identity theft. 

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“EDD employees rigorously work to protect the confidentiality of our claimant’s information and the integrity of the Disability Insurance program for Californians in need,” EDD Director Sharon Hilliard said in a statement. “We are grateful for the partnership of our federal and state partners in prosecuting any violator of that policy to the fullest extent of the law.”

Court documents say that Decker and Stubblefield filed 15 fake disability claims, taking in about $373,566.

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This case was the product of an investigation by EDD’s Investigation Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Shea J. Kenny and Amy S. Hitchcock prosecuted the case.

Stubblefield will begin serving her sentence starting Feb. 1, 2021. Stubblefield’s co-defendant Katherine Decker was sentenced earlier this year to three years and seven months in prison for the disability benefits fraud and identity theft scheme.

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