Grand jury indicts 65 in Ariz. student aid scheme

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PHOENIX -- A federal grand jury has indicted 65 people accused of defrauding the government out of more than $500,000 in federal student aid money.

Authorities say Trenda Lynne Halton, 37, of Peoria, Ariz., recruited people to pretend to be students and apply for student aid.

Halton is accused of creating fake documents and helping people enroll in online classes at Rio Salado Community College in Tempe.

U.S. Attorney for Arizona Diane Humetewa said that the alleged ruse was initially discovered by an alert financial aid officer at Rio Salado.

Halton was arrested Wednesday on charges of conspiracy, mail fraud, financial aid fraud and making false statements. It is unclear if she has an attorney.

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