Five Ulster County residents have been arrested following investigations into welfare fraud.

On Tuesday, the Office of Ulster County District Attorney announced five welfare fraud arrests for the month of November.

On November 27, 30-year-old Imani Heyward of Ellenville was arrested and charged with the felonies of welfare fraud, grand larceny and two counts of offering a false instrument for filing.

According to the Office of the Ulster County District Attorney, Heyward applied for and received SNAP benefits, then recertified for the SNAP benefits between December 2018 and October 2019 claiming three children residing in her household, when in fact the children have been residing elsewhere, in the custody and care of relatives. Ms. Heyward also did not reveal the fact that she was gainfully employed to the Department of Social Services, resulting in Ms. Heyward receiving $4,729.00 in SNAP benefits that she was not entitled to.

On November 21, 2019, Kimberly Gary, 26, of Highland was charged with offering a false instrument for filing and welfare fraud.

Gary filed an application for and began receiving SNAP benefits for a child who does not reside with her, resulting in Gary receiving $696.00 in SNAP benefits she was not entitled to, officials say.

Shawna Genosky, 46, and Ronald Searl, 51, both of West Hurley, are accused of filing several applications for SNAP benefits, not disclosing the fact that Mr. Searl had been receiving self-employment income from his contracting business.

On November 19, 2019, both were charged with three counts of felony offering a false instrument for filing and welfare fraud, a misdemeanor.

Amber Gontz applied for and received SNAP benefits from the Department of Social Services for a child who does not reside with her, but in fact has been residing elsewhere, in the custody and care of relatives, officials say. Resulting in Gontz allegedly receiving $569.00 in SNAP benefits that she was not entitled to.

On November 6, 2019, Gontz, 26, of Saugerties was charged with two counts of felony offering a false instrument for filing and misdemeanors for welfare fraud and petit larceny.

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