Ex-official accused of fraud getting $50,000 for injury

A former Chelsea selectwoman who faces federal extortion, tax evasion and fraud charges has received federal workers compensation payments of $50,000 a year.

Carole Swan has pleaded not guilty to charges she used her official position to extort $20,000 from a local construction company. She’s also accused of fraudulently charging the town more twice as much for a project than it cost her husband’s construction company to do the work.

Court documents obtained by the Kennebec Journal through a public records request show that Swan has received the workers comp payments for an arm and shoulder injury she sustained while working for the U.S. Postal Service in 1997.

The newspaper reported that federal prosecutors are seeking the return of at least $150,000 of the payments as part of the court case.

Swan’s attorney had no comment.


Suspected identity thief will face multiple counts

A New Hampshire man accused of assuming another person’s identity has been charged with multiple counts of fraud, tampering with public records, receiving stolen property, and other offenses.

State police said they arrested 54-year-old James Murnane Jr. of Pelham after a monthlong investigation.

He’s accused of fraudulently obtaining a New Hampshire non-driver identification card and a driver’s license after assuming another person’s identity.

Murnane was being arraigned Friday.


Foe of proposed F-35 base co-sponsoring a resolution

A Vermont lawmaker whose district would be affected by the possible basing of a new fighter jet in the Burlington area is proposing a legislative resolution against it.

Rep. George Cross is a Democrat representing Winooski, a small city in the flight path into and out of the Burlington International Airport where the F-35 fighter jet would be based.

Cross says his resolution has 30 co-sponsors and he hopes to garner more support from lawmakers around Vermont.

Supporters of the F-35 being housed with the Vermont Air National Guard say it would be an economic growth engine for northwestern Vermont.


Man sentenced for providing prostitutes for farm workers

A former Vermont state worker has been sentenced to six months of home detention for his role in a scheme to bring women from New York City to Vermont to engage in prostitution with farm workers.

Alex Young-Hernandez was sentenced Thursday in federal court in Brattleboro.

The 56-year-old worked as a case aide for the Department of Children and Family Services for 10 years at the time of his arrest, The Burlington Free Press reported.

Young-Hernandez said he learned about the prostitution operation in October 2010 from Jose Flores-Rocha at a trailer in northern Vermont where Young-Hernandez lived with several farm workers, according to court records.

“Flores-Rocha had brought a woman to his trailer to engage in sexual acts with at least one of Young-Hernandez’s roommates, who worked at a nearby farm. Flores-Rocha asked Young-Hernandez to provide numbers and names for farmer workers that might be interested in prostitution services. Young-Hernandez agreed,” said a sentencing memorandum filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather Ross.

Flores-Rocha was arrested six months later by Border Patrol agents. A woman traveling with him said he had taken her to three farms on March 15, 2011, to provide sexual services to farm workers, court records said.

When Flores-Rocha was arrested, he had Young-Hernandez’s business card and three text messages from Young-Hernandez on his cellphone listing addresses of farms where workers were interested in receiving sexual services, the sentencing memorandum said.