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Baton Rouge woman pleads guilty to stealing Social Security benefits

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BATON ROUGE, Louisiana — A Baton Rouge woman has pleaded guilty to defrauding the U.S. Social Security Administration for more than a decade.

U.S. Attorney Walt Green says 60-year-old Bertha Croom pleaded guilty July 6 before U.S. District Judge Shelly Dick. A bill of information alleges she stole $127,137 in retirement survivor insurance funds that she received in the name of her deceased mother. The funds were stolen over the course of 18 years.

Green, in a news release Tuesday, said Croom falsely represented that her mother was alive, living with her and that the funds were being spent for her mother's benefit.

The funds were disbursed and collected by Croom beginning in March 1995 and continued through Jan. 3, 2013. Croom's mother died Feb. 8, 1995.

A sentencing date wasn't announced.

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