Local man convicted of insurance fraud

SHELBYVILLE — A Flat Rock man is one of 38 Hoosiers who has been convicted in an recent unemployment insurance fraud investigation.

After Michael A. Peclet, 56, received a seven-year prison sentence, Shelby Circuit Court Judge Charles O’ Connor suspended three of those years, court records state.

But the judge also said Peclet must repay $31,850 for the benefits he fraudulently collected, according to a news release from the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

Peclet originally was charged with welfare fraud as a Class C felony on March 5, 2009, when he was living in Shelbyville. However, the case was not filed in O’Connor’s court for another six years, court records state.

The March 10, 2015, filing coincided with the beginning of the statewide investigation to identify and prosecute Hoosiers who commit unemployment insurance fraud.

It took deputies over a month to finally track down Peclet, who was residing near the Bartholomew-Shelby County line, and bring him before O’Connor, who ordered that bond be set at $10,000, court records state.

Online records indicate Peclet also has lived in Indianapolis, Brownsburg and Louisville, Kentucky, as well as Shelby County.

Although the court case was delayed for over a year, Peclet accepted a plea agreement on Aug. 16, 2016, and was sentenced by O’Connor on Sept. 29.

The only other south-central Indiana resident among the 38 convictions was Clay D. Snyder, 41, of Shelbyville.

Besides being ordered to repay $42,719, Snyder received one year in jail, three years on home detention, and three years of probation from Shelby Superior Court 1 Judge R. Kent Apsley on Nov. 29, court records state.

Evidence on all 38 convictions was largely based on wage reports and new hire data from Hoosier employers that was collected by an investigation task force, the release stated

Since last June, that task force has uncovered more than $750,000 in unemployment insurance payments collected through false, misreported or under-reported information, the release stated.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.