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Jerome man jailed for unemployment insurance fraud

A south central Idaho man has been jailed for defrauding the unemployment insurance program of nearly $8,000.

Richard Lee Roadcap, 49, of Jerome will spend six months under the state’s rider program after which 5th District Judge John Butler will evaluate his case to determine whether Roadcap should be placed on probation.

Butler sentenced Roadcap to two to five years in prison, citing a previous felony conviction, but suspended the sentence pending Roadcap’s performance in the minimum-security rider program. Butler also ordered Roadcap to repay the money he fraudulently took in jobless benefits.

Roadcap, who was arraigned in early October and pleaded guilty to unemployment insurance fraud on Nov. 30, claimed unemployment benefits while he was still working. His is the most recent criminal case developed by investigators for the Idaho Department of Labor, the department said in a release. More than a dozen other cases are pending.

As the economy deteriorated over the past two years and claims for unemployment benefits skyrocketed, the department intensified its campaign against benefit fraud. In 2009, department investigators uncovered over 900 cases of fraud involving nearly $3.5 million in benefit payments.

The Idaho Department of Labor said it is in the process of collecting those overpayments plus interest and penalties.

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