CARLSBAD, N.M. (KRQE) - A Carlsbad woman stands accused of fraudulently obtaining federal aid after her Facebook postings conflicted with her claims to public agencies, according to New Mexico State Police.
"I don't think that these people who use Facebook realize the importance it is to us law enforcement," said State Police Investigations Bureau Sgt. Nick Jimenez.
Jimenez says Alicia Ortega, 35, is one of the latest to be arrested because of what she posted to online social-media sites.
"She made several comments that advised the general public that she was living with her husband," said Jimenez.
State Police allege Ortega lied to government agencies about her marital status, household income and residence. They say those lies enabled her to cash in on nearly $40,000 worth of federal money.
Reports from caseworkers show Ortega stated she was separated from her husband, Roman Ortega, for eight years, that he lived in Plains, Texas, and she didn't even know how to contact him. Her Facebook posts told otherwise.
"She had made one comment that she had been married for 13 years and how grateful she was to have this individual in her life," said Jimenez.
Police say they found other posts saying "I love my hubby" and "I miss my hubby" on Ortega's Facebook profile.
"You're taking advantage of the system," said Jimenez. "There are people out there that actually do need the assistance, and they are having a hard time getting that assistance because they're being truthful and they're claiming their husband's income."
Ortega was arrested last week. She's facing 15 counts of false claim for reimbursements.
According to police records Ortega and her husband were co-defendants in six civil suits in the past 13 years and were sued by multiple companies.
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