- Associated Press - Thursday, September 11, 2014

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A Bogalusa businessman has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and mail fraud in what federal prosecutors say was an unemployment benefits scam.

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Polite (poh-LEET’) in New Orleans said in a Wednesday news release that 44-year-old Charles E. “Chuck” Mizell (MEYE’-zell) entered the plea before U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan. Three others involved in the scheme also pleaded guilty to conspiracy.

Mizell was president of Chamico Inc., a Bogalusa construction company. Prosecutors alleged that eight people, who were employed by Mizell, falsely told the state labor department that they were unemployed.

Prosecutors said Mizell had asked the employees to fraudulently file for unemployment so that he would not have to pay their full salaries. Sentencing for Mizell and other defendants is set for Dec. 17.

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