Jindal addresses EBT abusers

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) is going after the Electronic Benefit Transfer abusers from the October 14th incident that left the cards balances unlimited.

Suspected abusers will be getting a target letter outlining the offense which they can appeal within 90 days. Abusers can either sign a waiver and wait for punishment or file for a hearing in front of an administrative law judge.

Governor Bobby Jindal weighed in on the crack down on Thursday. "Let's be very clear why DCFS is doing this. We need to make sure we protect that program, the integrity of that program for people who truly need that help. Let's be very clear about the folks we are going after. These are people who intentionally misused their cards, these are people who intentionally misused the program, tried to defraud the taxpayers," said Jindal.

DCFS Secretary Suzy Sonnier says they asked the federal government what their options were. "We immediately requested of our federal partners the opportunity to do that and in the mean time continue to review the cases that we saw continue to see egregious issues that we thought should be dealt with," said Sonnier.

"I know everybody has talked about a list of about 12 thousand clearly not everyone on that list of 12 thousand has done anything that's unethical or committed fraud...we will start with the top of that list and look at those things that we think need to be addressed, said Sonnier.

She also says her office has been in touch with a number of District Attorneys around the state who may be pursuing criminal charges.

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