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Wise County man sentenced in unemployment fraud scheme

Wise County man sentenced in unemployment fraud scheme

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ABINGDON, Va. — A Wise County, Virginia, man will serve 87 months in prison for conspiring to defraud the United States and conspiring to commit mail fraud in a pandemic unemployment benefits scheme, the U.S. Attorney's Office said Thursday.

Travis Kilgore, 34, defrauded the government of more than $182,474 in pandemic benefits, attorneys said in a news release. Kilgore was ordered to pay $164,470 in restitution.

Kilgore admitted that he developed a scheme beginning in May 2020 to defraud the U.S. and the Virginia Employment Commission through the filing of fraudulent claims for pandemic unemployment benefits, the release states. The scheme involved submitting claims for various individuals, including Kilgore and his wife, who were not eligible to receive benefits, according to the release. In all, claims were filed for approximately 21 other individuals, the release states.

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