Jefferson County Man Guilty of FEMA Fraud Related to Hurricane Harvey

/
Hurricane Florence over the Atlantics close to the US coast, viewed from the space station. Gaping eye of a category 4 hurricane. Elements of this image furnished by NASA.

BEAUMONT, Texas – A Port Arthur man has pleaded guilty to hurricane-related fraud in the Eastern District of Texas, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei today. 

Jose Luis Carrillo, 50, pleaded guilty to an information charging him with fraud in relation to a major disaster or emergency benefits today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Keith F. Giblin.

“Defrauding federal programs is always an egregious act,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei.  “Disaster relief fraud is even more serious because of the limited nature of the funds intended to assist people in their time of greatest need.”

Department of Homeland Security Inspector General Joseph V. Cuffari stated, “This investigation and resulting plea demonstrates our continued commitment to identify and investigate all allegations of fraud to protect the integrity of FEMA programs funded by the taxpayer.   Theft of funds from DHS programs intended to help those in need will not be tolerated.”

Breaking News:  New Haven Gang Member Sentenced to 27 Months in Federal Prison for Illegal Gun Possession

According to information presented in court, Hurricane Harvey made landfall in southeast Texas in August 2017, causing extensive damage to the region.  On Sep. 21, 2017, Carrillo applied for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for a damaged dwelling located on Luis Drive in Port Arthur.  Carrillo stated that he owned the damaged dwelling and that it was his primary residence. Carrillo received a total of $23,619.70 in FEMA assistance for rental expenses and home repairs.  The actual residents of the residence also submitted an application, but were denied benefits.  An investigation determined that the actual residents had lived at the location from July 2017 until they moved out at the end of August 2017, after Hurricane Harvey struck.  Carrillo admitted that he fraudulently represented the home was his primary residence to obtain FEMA funds. 

Breaking News:  Texas Man Arrested for Assault on Law Enforcement During Jan. 6 Capitol Breach

Carrillo faces up to 30 years in federal prison.  The maximum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.  A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.

This case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rachel Grove.           

###

Project Safe Childhood

Help us combat the proliferation of sexual exploitation crimes against children.


 

Breaking News:  Worcester Man Pleads Guilty to Purchasing MBTA Passes Using Others' Identities

Learn More

Department Of Justice Action Center


 

Report a Crime

Employment/Law Interns

Locate a Prison, Inmate, or Sex Offender

Apply for a Grant

Submit a Complaint

Report Waste, Fraud, Abuse or Misconduct to the Inspector General

Find Sales of Seized Property

Find Help and Information for Crime Victims

Register, Apply for Permits, or Request Records

Identify Our Most Wanted Fugitives

Find a Form

Report and Identify Missing Persons

EDTX Corporate Enforcement Policy

Contact Us

Project Safe Neighborhoods

Our nation-wide commitment to reducing gun crime in America.


 

Learn More