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New York authorities arrested two people suspected of operating a phony staffing firm that charged candidates hundreds in application fees for nonexistent jobs, the New York State Attorney General’s office reported. The operators, Elena Shchukina, 22, and Ronald Ulysse, 32, were arraigned Wednesday in Manhattan Criminal Court.
“These imposters conned dozens of victims by offering them hope that they were on their way to securing a steady job,” said New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. “But rather than helping them find employment, the defendants simply stole their money. By repeatedly making false representations and demanding fees for nonexistent jobs and nonexistent services, these individuals scammed the unemployed and those looking for better jobs and eroded confidence in lawful organizations dedicated to helping people secure their futures.”
The suspects’ operated under various names including “Job Force One” and “United Care Service,” according to the Attorney General’s Office. They promised applicants immediate maintenance and cleaning jobs, and required the job-seekers to pay hundreds of dollars in application fees. The workers were then sent to false addresses or actual employers that had no association with the defendants. When applicants returned to demand their money back, the defendants promised refunds but never paid.
Dozens of job applicants were solicited and paid hundreds of dollars between December 2011 and October 2012, according to the Attorney General’s Office.
The defendants operated at multiple locations in New York City, including 688 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan, with the defendants continually moving to new locations once their activities were discovered, according to the Attorney General’s Office.