State Employee, Schenelle M. Flores Pleads Guilty to $2M Scheme to Defraud the Office of AIDS
SACRAMENTO, CA (STL.News) Schenelle M. Flores, 45, of Sacramento, pleaded guilty to wire fraud in relation to a scheme to divert funds from the California Department of Public Health, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.
According to court documents, Flores used her employment at the Office of AIDS, within the California Department of Public Health, to coordinate the fraud scheme between December 2017 and November 2018. The Office of AIDS is responsible for working on behalf of the State of California to combat the HIV and AIDS epidemic. Flores’s scheme involved directing a state contractor to make payments allegedly on behalf of the Office of AIDS and causing the contractor to charge those payments to the state.
As part of the scheme, Flores caused the contractor to pay for personal expenses on its debit cards, order gift cards for personal use, and pay false invoices to shell companies for services allegedly provided to the Office of AIDS. Flores, other participants in the scheme, and their families and friends obtained at least $2 million in personal benefits, including cash and purchased items.