89.1 WEMU

State Asks Courts To Dismiss Warrants Against People Accused Of Fraud

Jul 21, 2017

Line at Unemployment Office
Credit Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

A state agency has asked courts in three counties to dismiss 186 bench warrants against people accused of unemployment fraud.  The state could next ask for the charges to be dismissed altogether.

The bench warrants were issued against people who never showed up for court hearings after they were accused of defrauding the unemployment system.  In many cases, the accused never knew they were charged with a crime.

The Michigan Talent Investment Agency asked for the arrest warrants to be dismissed because there’s a good chance the people accused actually didn’t do anything wrong.  That’s because a computer foul-up caused thousands of people being wrongly accused.  

Not only that, many were sanctioned as much as four times the amount they collected in jobless benefits. 

The next step is for the agency to complete its review of 28,000 cases and dismiss charges against people it determines were innocent.

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— Rick Pluta is the Managing Editor and Reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org