ALBANY, NEW YORK – Jorge Ortiz, Jr., age 59, of Albany, was arraigned today on an indictment charging him with concealing his assets and resources, and making false statements, in connection with obtaining Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for a relative.
The announcement was made by Acting United States Attorney Antoinette T. Bacon and John F. Grasso, Special Agent in Charge of the Social Security Administration (SSA), Office of the Inspector General, New York Field Office.
The indictment alleges that Ortiz failed to disclose his assets and resources to the SSA from November 2008 through February 2016, and that as a result a relative in his care was able to receive SSI benefit payments that he was not otherwise eligible to receive. SSI is a needs-based program, available to elderly, blind, and disabled individuals, that provides money to pay for living expenses. The charges in the indictment are merely accusations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Ortiz was arraigned today in Albany before United States Magistrate Judge Christian F. Hummel, and ordered released pending trial.
The charges against Ortiz carry a maximum sentence of 5 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of up to 3 years. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors.
This case is being investigated by the SSA Office of the Inspector General and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Adrian S. LaRochelle.