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Six Westchester Men Stole Thousands In Unemployment Benefits, DA Says

The six seasonal employees facing multiple felony charges in Westchester.
The six seasonal employees facing multiple felony charges in Westchester. Photo Credit: Westchester County District Attorney's Office

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. - A group of seasonal workers in Westchester County are facing multiple charges for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars in unemployment benefits.

Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino, Jr. announced on Friday that six men who were working for various employees in Westchester have been arraigned on charges claiming they allegedly claimed nearly $50,000 in unlawful unemployment benefits from the New York State Department of Labor.

According to Scarpino, the men falsely certified online or had others do so stating that they were present in the country when they were actually out of the country. Scarpino noted that a person must be present in the United States to remain eligible to receive such benefits.

The six men allegedly claimed those unemployment benefits from 2010 to 2016. In total, it is estimated that the six men claimed $48,780.

Among those facing charges include:

  • New Rochelle resident Cesar Martinez, 50, who has been charged with felony counts of third-degree grand larceny, fourth-degree grand larceny and offering a false instrument for filing.
  • Mount Vernon resident Armando Escobar, 50, who has been charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of offering a false instrument for filing.
  • New Rochelle resident Hector Torres-Alcarez, 51, who has been charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of offering a false instrument for filing.
  • New Rochelle resident Federico Martinez, 56, who has been charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of offering a false instrument for filing.
  • New Rochelle resident Alvaro Munguia, 28, who has been charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of offering a false instrument for filing.
  • New Rochelle resident Cristian Mungia, 30, who has been charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of offering a false instrument for filing.

Martinez, Torres and Martinez worked at Almstead Tree and Shrub Care in New Rochelle. The Munguia’s worked at the Ardsley Country Club and Escobar was employed at AG Williams Painting in Pelham.

The defendants have all pleaded not guilty to the charges. They have been released on their own recognizance and had to surrender their passports, signing an agreement they would return to court. Each is due in court to answer the charges later this year.

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