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California gun bust leads to charges of $600,000 in EDD fraud

Prosecutors allege Adrian Sykes and his girlfriend filed 35 fraudulent claims and obtained more than $600,000.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Prosecutors say what started as a gun bust has led investigators to uncover $600,000 in pandemic-related fraud from California's unemployment agency. 

Adrian Sykes was arrested Monday for the second time in the case, this time in Las Vegas. He was initially arrested in February after Sacramento County prosecutors say a traffic stop and search of his house found six guns and six unemployment agency debit cards. 

Prosecutors allege Sykes and his girlfriend, 26-year-old Brittney Murchison, filed 35 fraudulent claims and obtained more than $600,000 using personal identifying information from victims nationwide.

Sacramento Police Department's North Gang Enforcement Team arrested Murchison on May 27 for EDD fraud, according to the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office. She faces 16 counts of EDD fraud and one count of identity theft. 

Sykes is in custody in Las Vegas and is pending extradition to Sacramento. The Sacramento County District Attorney says he will face 35 counts of EDD fraud and one count of identity theft.

“Law enforcement across the state has witnessed staggering EDD fraud committed by criminals and their accomplices. At the same time, we have witnessed an alarming increase of illegal firearms in our communities," said District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert. "This dangerous combination undoubtedly has fueled a dramatic increase in violent crime throughout the state. Sacramento’s law enforcement agencies will continue to partner together to investigate EDD fraud and the additional havoc it brings to our community.”

Sacramento County prosecutors say they don’t know if either has an attorney.

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