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South Carolina couple sentenced for farm assistance program fraud

In addition to prison time, Tyrone Goodrum ordered to pay more than $146,000 in restitution.

A South Carolina couple has been sentenced to prison for defrauding the farm assistance program.

Tyrone Goodrum, 45, of Florence, South Carolina, has been sentenced to 46 months in prison and his wife, Roselyn Goodrum, has been sentenced to 27 months in prison.

In February 2014, Winter Storm Pax caused extensive damage to farms in the Pee Dee region in northeastern South Carolina. As a result, farmers could make claims to the Farm Service Agency for financial assistance to clean up their land. 

Tyrone Goodrum conspired with his wife, Roselyn Goodrum, who was in charge of the FSA's Florence office, to file an application for payment, fraudulently representing that he was entitled to disaster benefits for a farm to which he had no connection.  As a result, $18,500 in federal money was diverted to satisfy Tyrone Goodrum’s outstanding child support debt. 

Overall, Roselyn Goodrum filed multiple false applications and illegally obtained just over $146,000, an amount for which Tyrone Goodrum, as a co-conspirator, is also responsible.

Goodrum was convicted by a jury on Nov. 8, 2016, and sentenced on May 10, 2017. Roselyn Goodrum was sentenced in February 2017. In addition to the prison time, he was ordered to pay more than $146,000 in restitution to the federal government.

United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell of Florence presided over the case.

The case was investigated by agents of the USDA, Office of the Inspector General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Winston Holliday, of the Columbia Office, prosecuted the case.

Source: USDA Office of Inspector General

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