62 to pay Michigan $960,000 for jobless aid fraud

IMLAY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — The state says 62 former employees of a food products company have pleaded guilty and will make $960,000 in restitution for fraudulently collecting unemployment benefits while continuing to work.

The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs announced the sentencing Wednesday. It says the 62 people worked for Pinnacle Foods Inc. in Lapeer County's Imlay Township, about 45 miles north of Detroit.

The Lapeer County prosecutor's office also carried out the investigation. The state says the defendants got probation and restitution orders ranging from $5,309 to $40,670.

Pinnacle Foods is based in Parsippany, N.J., and makes Duncan Hines, Vlasic, Birds Eye, Mrs. Butterworth's and other brands. The Associated Press left a phone message seeking company comment.

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Online:

Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs: http://www.michigan.gov/lara

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