A federal judge yesterday sentenced Lily Nguyen to two years in federal prison for her part in a scheme to grab the personal information of more than 100 people to create bogus accounts on the Massachusetts pandemic unemployment portal, the US Attorney's office reports.
Nguyen's sentence came after she pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. Last month, her accomplice, Daniel Maleus, pleaded guilty to similar charges and got three years. Both have to pay $526,423 in reimbursement.
The pair were humming along, grabbing people's info and setting up new unemployment accounts and getting payments, until one bank grew suspicious and said it would be closing one of the accounts in two weeks. The day after Nguyen showed up at a bank branch to demand the money she had in the account - which the bank refused to simply sign over - an FBI agent visited her for a chat at the start of an investigation into the pair.