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June 13, 2013
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Roseburg woman sent to prison for being welfare cheat

A 60-year-old Roseburg woman who lied to social service workers at least a dozen times about her marital status and household income will spend a year in prison for taking more than $330,000 from the government in Social Security and other benefits over a 14-year period.

Judith Ann Eubank was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken in Eugene, who also ordered Eubank to repay the government $333,900. Eubank pleaded guilty in October to theft of government funds.

Eubank may have halved her sentence by depositing $100,000 into a government account before Wednesday’s hearing.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Helen Cooper said today she initially planned to ask for up to two years in prison, but said she would support a shorter term after the payment.

“We did need to acknowledge that that was a substantial amount paid,” she said. “That did show acceptance of accountability.”

Eubank has 90 days to report to authorities to be taken to a federal prison.

“I’m backing off the 24 months, but I still think incarceration is warranted despite the $100,000 payment,” Cooper said.

“I’m pleased with the outcome. I’m definitely pleased with the $100,000 payment,” she said. “That’s a lot of money for the government.”

In a presentencing report, Cooper wrote that Eubank began receiving payments from the Social Security Administration in 1997. Eubank also collected Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families and medical benefits.

The defendant got married in 1998 and was no longer eligible for benefits because of her husband’s income, Cooper wrote.

Eubank concealed her marriage and household income and submitted multiple false statements to collect benefits. Eubank received $227,540 in medical benefits from the state Department of Human Services, $96,749.36 in Social Security welfare benefits, $8,839.83 in Temporary Assistance to Needy Family payments and $772 in food stamps.

She stole benefits approximately 168 times between 1998 and 2012 and used the money each month, Cooper wrote.

Eubank was ordered to repay the government the full amount. She had previously been convicted of forgery in 1995 and first-degree theft in 1996.

Eubank’s attorney, Laura Fine Moro, said Eubank suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder as the result of an abusive childhood. The Register-Guard reported Moro sought home confinement for Eubank instead of prison.

• You can reach reporter Betsy Swanback at 541-957-4208 or by email at bswanback@nrtoday.com.

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The News-Review Updated Jun 13, 2013 12:29PM Published Jun 14, 2013 09:04PM Copyright 2013 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.