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Woman dressed as dead mom arrested in pension plot

Published: Mar 4, 2011

FERNDALE, Wash. (AP) - Authorities say a Washington state woman suspected of pension fraud was arrested when she tried to open a bank account in her dead mother's name while disguised as her mother.

Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo says 59-year-old Loewen B. Craft was wearing a gray wig and makeup to make her look older when she arrived this week at a credit union branch in Ferndale, Wash.

The sheriff alleges Craft fraudulently collected more than $145,000 in pension benefits since her mother, Betty Becker, died in 2007.

Detective John Allgire was waiting at the credit union. He arrested Craft for investigation of first-degree identity theft, criminal impersonation and multiple counts of forgery.

Identity theft, forgery, bank fraud, wire fraud and computer access fraud are serious charges.  Most entail the possibility of jail time and thousands of dollars in restitution owed.  It is important to have legal counsel when notified that you are suspected of such crimes.  Contact the experienced legal team at Shaffer & Engle Law Offices, LLC at or toll free at 1-866-765-0706.

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