Department of State Contractor sentenced for Theft of Government Funds

Local News
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon announced today that Mauricio Andulo Hidalgo, 43, of Costa Rica, was sentenced to a term of 30 months in prison by the United States District Court in Charleston for stealing from the United States Government.

The news release states that Hidalgo previously pled guilty to Theft of Government Funds.  United States District Judge Patrick Michael Duffy, of Charleston, imposed the sentence, which also includes three years of supervised release and mandatory restitution. 

Evidence presented at a change of plea hearing established that Hidalgo used his position as President of SafetyPay-Central America to steal over $293,832 of government funds that were supposed to be transferred to a bank account maintained by the Department of State’s Global Financial Services Center in Charleston, officials added.  

SafetyPay-Central America had been hired as a subcontractor to handle the processing of visa application fees for the United States Embassy in Costa Rica.  

As part of the scheme, Hidalgo diverted the funds from a SafetyPay bank account in Costa Rica to another Costa Rican account under his sole control, officials added.
 

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