Houston woman guilty of disaster fraud
HOUSTON, TX -- A 46-year-old Houston resident has admitted to fraudulently obtaining more than $7,000 in disaster relief, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.
Latoya Romar entered a guilty plea to a scheme to defraud the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in connection with the severe storm that struck Houston May 4, 2015.
Romar applied for disaster relief, falsely claiming the storm damaged her residence and personal property. As part of her plea, she admitted she submitted forged documents to FEMA to substantiate her false claims.
As a result of her fraudulent claims, FEMA paid Romar $7,124.33 in disaster relief that she was not entitled to receive.
U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen accepted the plea and set sentencing for Aug. 16. At that time, Romar faces up to 30 years in federal prison and a $250,000 maximum possible fine. She was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.
The Department of Homeland Security - Office of Inspector General conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin R. Martin prosecuted the case.