LOS ANGELES (AP) — "Octomom" Nadya Suleman pleaded not guilty Tuesday to one count of welfare fraud and agreed to return to court next month for a another hearing if her case isn't resolved with a plea deal before then.
The 38-year-old mother of 14 children previously pleaded not guilty to three similar felony counts accusing her of failing to reveal earnings she was receiving from videos and personal appearances while cashing welfare checks last year. With the addition of the fourth count, authorities say she owes the state about $26,000 in restitution.
During a hearing that lasted barely five minutes, Suleman spoke only once, to softly say yes, when Superior Court Judge David M. Horowitz asked if she agreed to waive her right to trial to return to court April 16 for another hearing.
She smiled briefly but didn't speak as she quickly left the courtroom.
"We're doing discovery, we're investigating the case and then we'll be back to talk to the district attorney to see if this can be resolved," Suleman's attorney, Arthur J. LaCilento, said outside court. The two sides are scheduled to return to court April 16.