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Prosecutors: Woman lied about mom’s death to keep benefits

April 2, 2018

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey woman has been accused of stealing more than $46,000 by collecting her dead mother’s worker’s compensation dependency benefits for nearly three years.

The state attorney general’s office says 53-year-old Wanda Berry, of Jersey City, was indicted Thursday on insurance fraud and theft by deception charges. The indictment was made public Monday.

Berry’s mother died in November 2014.

Authorities say Berry told an insurance company in 2015 her mother was living in a nursing home under a doctor’s care. They say in 2016 she told the insurer her mother was alive in hospice care and provided a fraudulent doctor’s note to support that claim.

Authorities say Berry wanted to continue collecting the $1,400 monthly insurance benefit her mother had been receiving.

It’s unknown if Berry has retained an attorney.

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