An Illinois Department of Human Services caseworker from Highland has been charged with allegedly misappropriating more than $160,000 in assistance for needy families.
40 year old Amy Mueller, of Highland, was arraigned Thursday on charges brought by Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office in Madison County Criminal Court. Mueller was charged with one count of alleged theft exceeding $100,000 of government money, a Class X offense punishable by six to 30 years in prison; one count of alleged aggravated identity theft, a Class 1 felony punishable by four to 15 years in prison; two counts of alleged identity theft, a Class 2 felony punishable by three to seven years in prison; and five counts of alleged official misconduct and three counts of alleged wire fraud, Class 3 felonies punishable by two to five years in prison.
Madigan says Mueller, an IDHS caseworker at the department’s Madison County Family Community Resource Center, created fake benefit accounts using legitimate clients’ personal information in order to make cash withdrawals to spend for personal use, including vacations, restaurant visits, massages, tanning sessions and nail salons.
Mueller’s bond was set at $50,000, and her next court appearance was set for January 4.