Man slapped with prison time for unemployment scheme using inmate IDs

Aimee Ambrose
York Dispatch

A New Cumberland man faces a year-and-a-half in federal prison and $54,000 in restitution after admitting he conspired in a scheme to rip off unemployment funds.

A federal judge in Harrisburg sentenced Andrew Marszalek, 24, to 18 months in prison and three years of probation on March 7. The decision was part of an agreement in which Marzalek pleaded guilty in September 2021 to a count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, court documents show.

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The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Marszalek conspired with five other suspects to collect personal identification information from inmates in Pennsylvania state prisons. They then allegedly used that information to file false claims for unemployment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Payments from the system, amounting to “tens of thousands of dollars,” were then sent to an address in New Cumberland where the funds were accessed, the release shows.

As part of his sentence, Marszalek was also ordered to pay $54,516 to the state Labor and Industry Department, according to court records.

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Another alleged co-conspirator, Nicholas Baggio, 32, who’s a state prison inmate, has also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and is awaiting sentencing, the release shows.

Three other suspects — Alexis Figueroa, 32, of Philadelphia; Oscar Martinez, 28, and Jeovanny Shulz, 28, both prison inmates — are facing trials in the case. Joshua Powles, 33, of Philadelphia, is currently considered a wanted fugitive, federal prosecutors reported.

— Aimee Ambrose can be reached at aambrose@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @aimee_TYD.