MANHATTAN (CN) – A New York state employee was arrested Thursday and charged with stealing more than $944,000 in federal rent subsidies for low-income families.
Agnes Bernier worked for New York State Homes and Community Renewal, processing Section 8 housing subsidy refund payments to New York State’s Housing Trust Fund Corp. (HTFC).
On hundreds of occasions, Bernier allegedly stole money orders made out to the HTFC, by writing her own name over the letters ‘HTFC,’ and then depositing the money orders into her personal bank accounts,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement announcing her arrest. “For example, in December 2011 Bernier deposited 17 falsified money orders, worth more than $7,500 into her personal bank account.”
If convicted, Bernier, 55, of the Bronx, faces up to 10 years in federal prison for theft of government property, and 30 years for bank fraud.