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Livingston husband, wife allegedly stole from stroke victim

June 13, 2018, Livingston, NJ — A husband and wife from Livingston have been indicted for allegedly stealing more than $100,000 from an 87-year-old, bedridden stroke victim, prosecutors recently announced. The couple were indicted on multiple charges, including second-degree conspiracy and theft by deception.

Claudia Morais, 52, and Adilson Morais, 51, of Livingston are accused of stealing from the victim, who was being cared for in her home by Claudia Morais. The elderly widow required 24-hour care, according to a joint statement from New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal and the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.

According to prosecutors:

"Claudia Morais, who was privately employed as a caretaker for the victim, and Adilson Morais are accused of stealing more than $100,000 from the elderly woman through forged checks and unauthorized use of the woman's credit cards. The couple was indicted on one count each of conspiracy to commit theft by deception (2nd degree), theft by deception (2nd degree), conspiracy to commit identity theft (3rd degree), and identity theft (3rd degree). Claudia Morais was also indicted on one count each of forgery (3rd degree) and money laundering (3rd degree)."
Prosecutors added:

"In charges unrelated to the elderly woman's finances, the couple was indicted on one count each of conspiracy to commit Medicaid fraud (3rd degree) and Medicaid fraud (3rd degree) for allegedly falsely represented their income in order to fraudulently obtain insurance benefits through the Medicaid program."

The indictments stem from investigations conducted by OIFP's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU), which receives federal funding to investigate and prosecute Medicaid provider fraud as well as the abuse or neglect of Medicaid patients, or patients who reside in facilities that receive Medicaid funding, prosecutors said.

Second-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $150,000, while third-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence of five years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $15,000, prosecutors said.

Source: Livingston Patch

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