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Portsmouth Woman Charged With Collecting Unemployment Benefits Under False Pretenses

Tara L. Mellow, 39, of 471 Water St., was arrested and charged with fraudulently obtaining $10,895 in unemployment benefits.

State Police arrested 16 people, including a Portsmouth resident, on Tuesday for allegedly obtaining unemployment benefits under false pretenses. 

The 16 people arrested are collectively accused of fraudulently obtaining benefits totaling approximately $162,226.

Among them was Portsmouth's Tara L. Mellow, 39, of 471 Water St., who is accused of fraudulently obtaining $10,895 in unemployment benefits. 

She was charged Tuesday with obtaining money under false pretenses over $500.

The following people were also arrested Tuesday. 

  • Cara A. Stifano, 39, of 19 Watkins Ave., Cranston, who is accused of obtaining $9,085
  • Antonio P. Varela, 26, of 432 Lonsdale Ave., Pawtucket — $5,343.00
  • Dennis P. Kelly, 51, of 485 Douglas Pike, Apt. 36, Smithfield — $5,861
  • Belinda Meyer, 30, of 106 Bouvier Ave., Lincoln — $9,122
  • Michael S. Goldman, 24, of 9 Scandia Ave., Warwick — $10,839.00
  • Roger P. Boutin, 48, of 291 Killingly St., Providence — $15,095
  • Anthony G. Caprio, 63, of 162 Bracken St., Cranston — $5,793
  • Daniel T. Long, 32, of 136 Custer St., Warwick — $6,315
  • Noel E. Garcia, 26, of 957 Cranston St., Cranston — $5,690
  • Ellen G. Becote, 54, of 131 Mitola Drive, North Kingstown — $41,921
  • Joseph Saunders, 48, of 59 John H. Chafee Boulevard, Newport — $10,025
  • Gerlo Leone, 35, of 70 Dunnell Ave., Apt. 2, Pawtucket — $5,800
  • Irene Salazar, 41, of 631 Daggett Ave., Pawtucket — $5,366
  • Louis Montecalvo, 54, of 151 Ocean Road, Apt. 2, Narragansett — $8,942
  • Nicholson S. Gomes, 33, of 194 Salina St., Providence — $6,134

All 16 were arraigned and released on personal recognizance.

These felony arrests represent an ongoing effort by the State Police and the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training to identify and prosecute those individuals who fraudulently obtain unemployment benefits from the state. 

"The State Police will continue its vigilance in pursuing those who take advantage of a system that is designed to assist them, especially during these difficult, economic times," said Colonel Steven G. O’Donnell, superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police and commissioner of the Department of Public Safety. 

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