MARY BETH BUCHANAN
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
WESTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA
U.S. Post Office & Courthouse
700 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
NEW KENSINGTON WOMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO LYING ON PHEAA LOAN APPLICATION
United States Attorney Mary Beth Buchanan announced today, June 17, 2009, that Cassandra Black, a resident of New Kensington, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of making a false statement in a loan application.
Black, age 63, of 400 Fifth Avenue, New Kensington, Pennsylvania pleaded guilty to one count before United States District Judge Terrence F. McVerry.
In connection with the guilty plea, Assistant United States Attorney Gregory C. Melucci advised the court that Black made false representations on loan applications for PHEAA Plus loans, and forged the signature of another person in order to obtain the loans.
Judge McVerry scheduled sentencing for September 18, 2009 at 10:30 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of 30 years in prison, a fine of $1,000,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Pending sentencing, the court continued Black on bond.
The United States Department of Education, Office of Inspector General conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Cassandra Black.