Five Wenatchee Valley residents charged with welfare fraud

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Five Wenatchee Valley residents were brought to court this week on charges of welfare fraud. [

The Department of Social and Health Services says four Wenatchee defendants and one from Entiat unlawfully received more than $66,000 in welfare benefits, including food aid and childcare subsidies.

In most cases, the charges involve failure to report new income, or in one case, to report a marriage.

State investigators referred the cases to Chelan County prosecutors in December.

Each of the five people is charged with first-degree theft, second-degree perjury, and making false statements to receive state aid.