MALONE — A husband and wife were arrested here Nov. 12 after an investigation by the Franklin County Department of Social Services, Fraud Unit, State Police say.

Kathleen M. Batchelder, 53, and Ralph J. Batchelder, 57, were both arrested on welfare fraud-related charges, State Police Troop B Public Information Officer Trooper Jennifer Fleishman said, following an over two-year-long period when they both failed to report certain benefits.

Mr. Batchelder failed to report his unemployment benefits while Mrs. Batchelder withheld information about other social services benefits she was receiving, resulting in each of them falsely being eligible for an extra $5,896 in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program assistance, Fleishman added.

As a result, they were each charged with four felonies: third-degree grand larceny, third-degree welfare fraud, first-degree offering a false instrument for filing and third-degree misuse of food stamps.

They were both arraigned Nov. 12 in Malone Town Court and released on their own recognizance to return Feb. 25.

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