Gretna woman sentenced for stealing SS funds

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A 76-year-old Gretna woman has been sentenced to three years of probation for theft of government funds.

U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan sentenced Shirley A. Bunda on Wednesday and ordered her to pay restitution to the Social Security Administration in the amount of $133,297.

U.S. Attorney Jim Letten's office said in a news release that Bunda shared a joint checking account with her mother, who was receiving Social Security benefits. Prosecutors say Bunda failed to inform the agency of her mother's death on Feb. 15, 1998, and the agency continued to send monthly benefits to the checking account via direct deposit.

Bunda received $173,297 in benefits to which she was not entitled from the date of her mother's death through Aug. 3, 2011. Bunda has since repaid the agency $40,000.

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