oversight

Scottsboro Woman Sentenced To 30 Months For Role in PELL Grant Fraud Birmingham, AL, August 8, 2008

Published by the Department of Education, Office of Inspector General on 2008-08-08.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report.

OIG Investigative Reports, Former Official with LAUSD Arrested in Fraud Scheme in which He Authorized Large Purchase of Book He Wrote
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Investigation Report
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 8, 2008
www.usdoj.gov/usao/aln/
U.S. Department of Justice  UNITED
STATES ATTORNEY ALICE H. MARTIN
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
CONTACT: KAREN NARAMORE
Telephone: (205) 244-2001
Fax: (205) 244-2171
Scottsboro Woman Sentenced to 30 Months for Role in Pell Grant Fraud
BIRMINGHAM, AL — WANDA BELL GAITHER, 58, of Scottsboro, Alabama, was sentenced
today by United States District Court Judge R. David Proctor to 30 months in
federal prison for her managerial role in a scheme that defrauded the United
States Department of Education of approximately $100,000.00. GAITHER was also
ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $107,527.00. The sentence is announced
today by United States Attorney Alice H. Martin and the U.S. Department of Education
Office of Inspector General.
GAITHER was the owner of Gaither and Company Beauty School in Scottsboro, where
the majority of students received Pell Grant awards to cover their tuition.
GAITHER pled guilty in April to participating in and directing her employees
to participate in a scheme in which Gaither and Company Beauty School submitted
falsified Pell Grant applications to obtain Pell Grant funds for which students
were not qualified.
"The Pell Grant program exists to help the neediest people in our society receive
higher education and vocational training that they otherwise could not afford.
When someone like Wanda Gaither steals from that program, she steals from those
people who truly need those education dollars," said Alice H. Martin, U.S. Attorney
for the Northern District of Alabama.
"I am proud of the work of OIG Special Agents and their commitment to protecting
the integrity of federal education funds," said Mary Mitchelson, Acting Inspector
General for the U.S. Department of Education. "We will continue to work with
our colleagues in law enforcement to aggressively pursue those who seek to defraud
federal education programs at the expense of our nation's students.
This case was investigated by Special Agents of the U.S. Department of Education
Office of Inspector General. Assistant United States Attorneys Melissa K. Atwood
and William C. Athanas and Trial Attorney Nicola Mrazek of the United States
Department of Justice Fraud Section prosecuted this matter on behalf of the
United States.
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Last Modified: 08/22/2008
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