TACOMA– Two people were arraigned in Pierce County Superior Court today on fraud and identity theft-related charges filed by the Attorney General’s Office.
Sophia R. Sanders, 39, pled not guilty to two counts of Identity Theft in the First Degree, one count of Theft in the First Degree, 14 counts of Theft in the Second Degree and three counts of Medicaid False Statement. These felony crimes are punishable by up to ten years in prison and/or a $20,000 fine.
The state alleges that Sanders assumed the identity of her juvenile ward’s in-home care provider after that provider moved out of state. Sanders then billed the state Department of Social and Health Services more than $90,000 over a 5-year period, using the alleged victim’s identity.
Sanders’ trial is set for Nov. 21, 2005.
Theodore L. Anderson, the 40-year-old owner of Fine Tuned Hearing Aids, contracted with DSHS to provide hearing aids and related services to agency clients. Charges were filed on Aug. 23, 2005, alleging that Anderson billed DSHS for hearing aids never provided to recipients. The state further maintains that Anderson falsely collected $14,000 from DSHS over the course of two years.
Anderson faces up to ten years in prison and/or a $20,000 fine. A trial date has not yet been established.
“ One of my highest priorities as AG is to increase prosecution of ID theft crimes,” McKenna said. “We must also protect citizens of this state from fraudulent use of taxpayer dollars. I am pleased that our office is able to assist local prosecutors in these efforts.”
For more information contact:
Janelle Guthrie, AG Media Relations Director, (360) 586-0725 or (360) 561-4184