A Tulare County human services employee was sentenced to four years in prison Tuesday for embezzling $145,000 in county welfare money.
Yvonne Hernandez must also repay the county, Judge Kathryn Montejano ruled.
The court found that between July 2009 and October 2013, Hernandez created 18 bogus welfare accounts while working as a counselor at the county’s Health and Human Services Agency and used the money for her personal gain. The agency received a complaint from the public and the Tulare County district attorney’s conducted an investigation. Details about the investigation were not immediately available.
“Taking advantage of both the taxpayer and those who need a helping hand the most is a clear violation of the public trust,” said District Attorney Tim Ward. “This office will continue to vigorously prosecute those who commit fraud against our communities.”
So far this year, the Tulare District Attorney has filed 41 fraud cases totaling $341,917.