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61 D.C. employees terminated -- for collecting jobless benefits

The proof was in the paychecks: After a review of city records, the mayor of Washington, D.C., has fired 61 people for collecting jobless benefits while also working for the city.

The 61 were among 92 employees suspended last February, when the investigation was first announced.

"We’re not going to tolerate this kind of activity in the government," the Washington Post quoted Pedro Ribeiro, spokesman for Mayor Vincent Gray, as saying Tuesday.

The checks were up to $20,000 per worker since 2009 and totaled about $800,000, the Post reported, citing city officials.

The city expects to fire more employees, the Post added, while three were found to have been unaware that they were getting the jobless benefits. Another returned to work after repaying the money.

The city has said it would refer the names of employees found to have defrauded the city to the U.S. attorney for prosecution.

It also hired an outside auditor to review its jobless program.

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