BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – A federal judge sentenced a Bloomington woman to more than 5 years in prison for bilking millions of dollars from state and federal governments during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Oluwatobi Seton, 28, pleaded guilty to wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy to commit money laundering. A judge sentenced her to nearly 5.5 years in prison.

According to federal prosecutors, Seton worked with co-conspirators in Nigeria to obtain unemployment and other benefits from state and federal governments during the pandemic, stealing nearly $5.5 million in total.

Seton and her overseas co-conspirators used stolen identities to apply for the benefits. They opened accounts with mobile checking platform GoBank and obtained debit cards so they could deposit the money and spend it.

Seton and the others submitted false and fraudulent employment applications to unemployment agencies throughout the U.S. The money ended up in the GoBank accounts; Seton used fake driver’s licenses with the victims’ names to access the funds.

When authorities arrested her, Seton was in possession of more than 1,400 GoBank cards and 10 driver’s licenses with different names. Investigators seized more than $550,000 in cash and GoBank accounts during their investigation.

Federal prosecutors said the operation resulted in at least $5,475,459 in actual and attempted losses to state unemployment offices and other state and federal agencies. Seton kept some of the money for herself and sent the rest to co-conspirators, including business partners in Nigeria.

While Seton and the others took the money, they also caused enormous problems for the people whose identities they stole, investigators said.

“Profiting from programs meant to help those in need is a despicable and unacceptable crime in and of itself. But this defendant took it a step further and stole identities to perpetrate this fraud and caused those victims immeasurable time in an effort to clear their names,” said FBI Indianapolis Special Agent in Charge Herbert J. Stapleton.

Upon her release from prison, Seton will serve 1 year of supervised release. The judge also ordered her to pay more than $4.3 million in restitution.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Bloomington Police Department and Monroe County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case.