Waialua woman sentenced again for welfare fraud
April 21, 2018 | 81° | Check Traffic

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Waialua woman sentenced again for welfare fraud


    Mary Jane Delgado Ponce


A 53-year-old Waialua woman was sentenced today to five years in prison for committing welfare fraud again.

First Circuit Judge Shirley Kawamura sentenced Mary Jane Delgado Ponce, also known as Mary Jane Dalumpinis, to the maximum sentence for second-degree theft.

An Oahu jury found Ponce guilty in October of obtaining thousands of dollars in food stamps benefits from the state by deception.

As a repeat offender, Ponce must serve a minimum of 20 months before being eligible for parole.

From April 2010 to April 2014, Ponce was overpaid $3,723 in food stamps benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program because she did not disclose to state officials that she was married.

State Attorney General Doug Chin said Ponce was convicted of welfare fraud in 2009 and began defrauding the state again one year later.

“People should not steal public funds and abuse this important social safety net,” Chin said in a statement.

SNAP is administered by the state and provides food and nutritional support to qualifying low-income households. In fiscal year 2014, SNAP helped an estimated 193,600 state residents or 98,400 families.


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  • Only 1 in 1000’s caught. So many driving the latest SUV while getting SNAP and housing benefits. Go to Costco on the SNAP pay day and go look what they are driving not to mention all the expensive steaks and seafood put out specially on those days. I know. I had 2 months of SNAP when I was really in need with no money and I made those benefits stretch on eating chicken and no beef.

    • Better yet, drive down to the nearest section 8 housing and look at the parked cars there….She is one of the reasons why social programs don’t work. Under Obama, more parasites joined the rank and file of welfare w#ores, to him that is success. The Demoncrats like to preach the evolution theory, but they don’t seem to understand the relationship between the host and the parasite. Social programs have raised parasites and these parasites are sucking the daylight of THE REAL TAX PAYERS. There is an old saying, give a man a fish and you only feed him until that fish is all consumed, give him the knowledge to fish and you will feed him for a lifetime.

      • I’ll do ya one better. Few years ago, a girl in our office had (has) a husband whose unemployment benefits were about to run out. He was going to get a job UNTIL they were approved for section 8 housing allowance. Now, and for the last 3 years, section 8 has “afforded” him the ability to sit at home and NOT have to get a job as, apparently, there are NO work search requirements when you’re on section 8. You qualify for section 8 based on low monthly income. His staying at home KEEPS their income low.

        • And Section 8 does little to investigate and prosecute fraud. If they would just create a department of investigators like the welfare office they could identify many defrauding the system and save millions of dollars. Sometimes Section 8 fraud involves multiple generations of the same family. Pretty disgusting while others work hard to make a living.

    • Privacy laws prevent detection of welfare fraudsters. If the names of people on public assistance would be available to the public and neighbors many would be caught cheating. The names of people on welfare should be published .

    • no hon. You mistake the fetid Punahou parking lot with Cosco on SNAP day. But that said, this kind of fraud is fairly rare. It should never happen. I agree. But SNAP is a lifeline for millions of children and families.

    • That’s correct, Uch808. The Left think that it’s government’s job to support those who might otherwise get a job and be productive citizens. Sure, some folks really neat help and warrant it, but way too many sit on their over-sized posteriors so they can watch TV, eat cheesy puffs and act like their independently wealthy. The Left encourages sloth and does little to force people rise out if it. The Left love’s dependency! It gets votes. Bill Clinton new better and was able to millions off of welfare by forcing them to get jobs. By today’s standards he’d be a Republican.

    • Agree but the theft is pretty petty, legal court and incarceration charges for the tax payers to foot of this violator will far outweigh the theft if the judge would have just forced repayment and penalties. Priorities are all messed up, they should be going after the big fish stealing millions and billions like Krook Caldwell.

  • “…Ponce was convicted of welfare fraud in 2009 and began defrauding the state again one year later.”
    Anyone convicted of welfare fraud should not be allowed to collect again.

        • Allaha, technically, they can’t go after her husband. She filed the paperwork claiming she isn’t married. Without his signature they can’t go after him. Also, it’s quite possible he might be an innocent spouse while his wife was on a spending spree without telling him.

        • She has to pay it back. But of course if she’s that old and still on assistance, she will pay it back by the state simply deducting a portion of her future welfare benefits.

      • That is classic leftist thinking. The State withholds 10% of our tax dollars (free money to these cheats) and still gives these crooks 90% of it??? That’s Rich!!

  • Laws must be enforced/tweeked and hold fathers responsible for fathering any child. This will eliminate abuse of of SNAP and WIC. Have to thank the DEMs for this mess.

    • She should have hired a better lawyer. A good lawyer in HI would pull out her voter registration records to show to the court that she’s a devout “D” voter and have her yell out every “D” politician she voted for in order to get a mistrial.

  • What a joke! I can name several people leaching illegally off the government. You could probably do so too. Multiply this by the millions and the consequences to taxpayers is unfathomable. Then there’s the tax cheats, cash payments under the table, insurance fraud, etc. Note: we have the best form of government…..that money can buy!

    • You “…can name several people leaching (sic) off the government.”. Would you PLEASE report these leeches to the appropriate agency please? Doing so would do many of us a favor. Thank you.

  • South 76 Quit the Obama crap. These are local programs administered by people who don’t care who gets help. The fact that she has been convicted for fraud once before should have made her ineligible to collect welfare ever again.

    • This was my first thought, too. The fact that she was convicted AGAIN? Understandably, she might still need assistance after the first conviction but at the very least, cut the percentage of further assistance as a “penalty.”

  • Not sure what the correct punishment should be here, but 3 years in prison on the taxpayers dime for a $3500 crime, while fair to the perpetrator, seems another unfair whammy to the taxpayer.

  • Not sure what the correct punishment should be here, but 3 years in prison on the taxpayers dime for a $3500 crime, while maybe (or maybe not) fair to the perpetrator, seems another unfair whammy to the taxpayer.

    • Agreed, would have been more prudent to repay all ill-gotten gains tack on penalties and interest and place her on probation. Instead of stealing a mere $930 every year from taxpayers we’ll now be footing a $65,000 annual bill to house and feed her in jail/prison.

  • Wow. I agree with this decision but- Kenoi goes free when he uses taxpayers money to buy alcohol, surf board etc?? Doug Ching you to are just another politician. You people should be in jail with the key thrown away. Kenoi missed used more than thirty times than this lady(which I agree with the penalty) and goes free. Where is justice

  • Programs like SNAP need to be redefined. If you go to the SNAP website, it states the the primary purpose of the program is to provide NUTRITIONAL aid to those in need. If that is the case, why is it that every single time I’m at 7-11 there are people in front of me in line using a SNAP card to buy a Big Gulp and a bag of chips. Snap usage should be permitted for grocery store use only and since it is the 21st century,, SNAP benefits should only be allowed to used to buy items that have been certified as nutritional…..this could easily be done by using bar codes. Your typical American tax payer has a big heart and wants to help those in need, but not to be raked over the coals for wasteful spending….a hand up…..NOT A HAND OUT.

    • Half dozen other states started requiring recipients to either work or volunteer 20 hours in order to get their snap benefits. That SIMPLE requirement caused 30% reduction in payouts. Guess people really didn’t NEED it, just wanted the free handout since it was free. Just not willing to do anything FOR it. Hawaii needs to do the same.

      • Hawaii did implement the work requirement rule. If you are single and able bodied, you must work 20 hours a week or you do not qualify for SNAP after you receive 3 months of SNAP benefits.

    • Well, Soldier, perhaps your BAH should be regulated too, as it affects our housing market to our detriment. And your tax-free NEX purchases too. And your reduced or eliminated state income taxes. You are highly subsidized and some recognition of that would be in order.

      • BAH and the other benefits military personnel receive are part of the package when a person enlists in the military. The enlisted person actually earns these benefits by serving our country. You cannot compare military benefits to SNAP/welfare benefits.

        • Then the military should stay on their bases for housing . Not staying on base just adds to our housing problems. Know anyone who would rather rent to the military then Hawaii civilians. I know plenty. They rent for a few years, move on, and you get to rent to another military person, and raise the rent. No housing left for locals. Use our state services and pay jack for it. Oh, I forgot. They are all heroes. Thanks for your service. Now go home!

        • jmt47 – I don’t disagree that part of our affordable housing problem is due to the military living off base. The nature of my posting isn’t about availability of affordable housing. Rather it’s about inappropriately comparing military benefits with welfare benefits.

  • “…because she did not disclose to state officials that she was married.”>>> Wow, this state has got a LONG way to go to find this happening all over the island. In most cases, girls simply living WITH the baby daddy’s while “claiming” they don’t know where he is WHILE collecting welfare so HIS check doesn’t get hit for child support.

  • These are crimes borne of poverty. If stiffing the taxpayers is really the concern, how far more egregious is someone like the president elect, who raked in billions by stiffing our national coffers for 18 years, not paying one cent in taxes. He brags that’s because his smart. I don’t like cheats, this lady should pay her debt to society, but we need to think more deeply about why it feels so good to dump on this lady while exalting the ruthless.

    • Yes, tax payers will foot the bill for prison. And on the flip side, the city says “oops” and tax payers cough up another billion for the rail boondoggle and nobody is held accountable.

    • Not stolen funds but “overpaid” LOL You gotta love the justice system in the Banana Republic. They’ll let Krook steal millions while some poor sap collecting an extra $930 a year gets 5 years!

      • How about 40+ million illegals and their anchor babies!

        Based on the facts she should have changed her name to Maria Janita Rodriguez and marked Mexican for race and omitted to list a SSN and then she would have gotten 41% more! LOL

        All immigrant-headed households — legal and illegal — receive an average of $6,241 in welfare annually, 41 percent more than the $4,431 received by a non-immigrant household on welfare, according to the analysis!