- Associated Press - Sunday, October 12, 2014

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - State police and the Rhode Island attorney general say 18 people have been arrested in an investigation of unemployment benefit claims that discovered more than $300,000 fraudulent collections.

State Police Col. Steven O’Donnell, Attorney General Peter Kilmartin and Labor and Training Director Charles Fogarty announced the sweep Friday and said more arrests are expected in the near future.

The officials said the 18 people arrested on Thursday have been arraigned on felony charges in Providence and been released on personal recognizance. Eight are from Providence.

Authorities said the alleged frauds range from $6,000 to $38,000.

The attorney general’s office and Department of Labor and Training began collaborating last year on investigations of benefit fraud and employers’ failure to pay wages. The effort has resulted in court-ordered restitution of about $280,000.

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