Michigan residents may be aware of a case in another state where more than $1.3 million was embezzled from a for-profit charter school. Federal prosecutors allege that a former executive director of the school used money meant for the school’s accounts for personal enrichment. The woman reached a plea agreement with prosecution on the day the federal charges for white collar crimes were filed against her, indicating to the court that she would enter a guilty plea.
Reportedly, a routine audit in 2018 first discovered irregularities in the accounts of the charter school. Auditors reported that the charter school director used school funds to cover personal expenses. Some of the unauthorized payments were made directly from business accounts to Louis Vuitton, Disney, the Girl Scouts, Uber, Ticketmaster, a children’s dentist and more.
The 52-year-old former director faces charges of embezzlement, theft, tax evasion and misapplication of federal funds meant for the organization. Reportedly, the woman could face a federal prison sentence of up to 15 years. According to the prosecution, she admitted paying for her children’s private school tuition, personal travel, purchases from Etsy and Amazon and restaurant meals. Furthermore, she said over $220,000 was spent on Disney-related expenses, including theme parks, cruise line vacations and more.
When people in professional occupations face federal charges, legal counsel should be consulted at the first opportunity. Anyone in Michigan accused of white collar crimes can retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney to advocate for them throughout ensuing legal proceedings. Based on the charges and the gathered evidence, legal counsel can help to determine whether seeking a plea agreement, if that is on the table, or defending the client at trial would be the best way to proceed.