Hungry Horse Woman Admits Defrauding Government

By Beacon Staff

KALISPELL — A 48-year-old Hungry Horse woman has pleaded guilty to illegally receiving Medicaid and Social Security benefits by hiding assets.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Yvonne Owens-Morris pleaded guilty to theft of government money Wednesday during a federal court hearing in Missoula. Prosecutors say she received about $65,000 in federal benefits to which she was not entitled between 2008 and 2011.

Court records say Owens-Morris qualified for benefits after reporting she received $300 per month from family members and had $100 in the bank.

Investigators found she didn’t report receiving $87,000 in proceeds from the sale of a bar or a $101,000 insurance settlement after being injured in a fall. Prosecutors say she also did not disclose a $2,600 investment account or her interest in Texas property valued at more than $47,000.

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