Federal prosecutors have accused a St. Paul woman who formerly operated two nonprofit organizations of stealing government funds intended for the organizations. The 57-year-old woman's nonprofits had been focused on preventing teen pregnancy and assisting various minority groups. According to charges read in federal court on July 11, the woman had used grant money set aside for the nonprofit groups to pay for personal expenses, including designer clothing and handbags. In total, the woman is accused of taking more than $460,000.
According to the criminal complaint, money set aside by the Minnesota Department of Health to fight sexually transmitted diseases and teen pregnancy and to provide housing assistance to families in need had instead been used to pay for the defendant's personal expenses, such as her mortgage and car payments. The alleged fraud took place over the course of more than four years, ending in late 2012. That same year, the Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor said that it had found evidence that the woman had fabricated documents in order to cover up the fraud.