A Palmdale woman pleaded guilty to seven counts of mail fraud in a federal student aid fraud scheme today.
According to the indictment, from June 2010 to January 2012, 32-year-old Shauna Fabrega recruited people to act as straw students and to apply for Federal Student Aid funds with her assistance at Bakersfield College, Cerro Cosso Community College, and Santa Barbara Community College.
Reports said the applicants were not students and did not intend to attend classes. Fabrega also applied for FSA funds in her own name and enrolled herself in courses at the three schools. She was not eligible to enroll in such courses because she was not a high school graduate.
In addition, Fabrega allegedly obtained identification information from individuals without their knowledge and used that information to apply for FSA funds. As a result, the Department of Education lost more than $70,000.
Fabrega is scheduled to be sentenced on December 9, 2013. The maximum sentence for mail fraud is 20 years in prison.