OIG Investigative Reports, Grand Jury Returns Indictment Charging Pell Grant Fraud Skip to main contentAbout UsContact UsFAQs Language Assistance Englishespañol中文: 繁體版Việt-ngữ한국어TagalogРусский U.S. Department of Education Search for: Toggle navigation U.S. Department of Education Student Loans Grants Laws Data About ED OFFICES Home Reports & Resources Programs/Initiatives News Office Contacts Investigative Reports NEWS RELEASE: June 30, 2000 CONTACT PERSON: Luis M. Perez Assistant United States Attorney Ph. 305-961-9418 /Fx. 305-530-6168 E-mail: email@example.com Grand Jury Returns Indictment Charging Pell Grant Fraud Guy A. Lewis, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; Susan Eager, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Atlanta Regional Office, United States Department of Education; and Hector M. Pesquera, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Miami Field Office, announced today the return of a Superseding Indictment charging nine defendants in a massive conspiracy ultimately resulting in the loss of in excess of $3,000,000 to the Pell Grant Program, the Department of Education program meant to assist students in obtaining a college or vocational school education. Over the course of five years, Garces Commercial College employees, at the behest and direction of its administrators, recruited scores of "college students" from Musa Isle Senior Center, a Metro-Dade Housing and Urban Development facility for elderly Miami-Dade County residents. Although Garces students were being taught macrame and other crafts classes, the Pell Grant Program was paying for what conspirators had claimed were Pell-Approved Interior Decorating and Graphic Design classes. Further, the conspirators then began "recycling" student files, time after time, until finally, the school, the investigation revealed, filed numerous claims for several "college students" who were deceased when they were supposedly attending Garces courses. Members of the conspiracy then funneled millions of dollars in Pell funds to several dummy corporations constructed to siphon off the money made from the scam. Several companies were incorporated off-shore with bank accounts in foreign countries. The thirty-eight (38) count Indictment charges the nine charged defendants with conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States, wire fraud, false claims, conspiracy to launder money and money laundering. The defendants charged are: Gabriel Torres, 03/24/58, of Davie, Florida, Director of Garces; Elena Nespereira, 10/28/51, of Miami, Garces President; Marcial Torres, 7/3/54, of Chicago, Illinois, who owned several corporations that received money from Garces; Adamina Ortega, 8/28/35, of Miami, a Garces business manager; Miriam Carrandy, 12/19/46, of Miami, Director of Financial Aid at Garces; Haydee Alvarez, of Miami, an employee in the Garces financial aid department; Hiran Valle, 7/9/51, of Hialeah, a Garces handyman; Alina Torres, 10/10/68, of Hialeah Gardens, a receptionist at Garces; and Osmara Sam, 4/10/25, of Miami, who was Activities Director for the Musa Isle Senior Center, the facility from where all of the "college students" were recruited. The case was investigated by Special Agent Robert M. McRae, Jr., of the Department of Education, and Special Agent Kimberly D. Landon of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Top Printable view Share this page Last Modified: 03/02/2005 How Do I Find... Student loans, forgiveness College accreditation No Child Left Behind FERPA FAFSA 1098-E Tax Form 2015 Budget Proposal More > Information About... Transforming Teaching Family and Community Engagement Early Learning K-12 Reforms More > Connect Facebook Twitter YouTube Email RSS Google+ More > MISUSED FOIA OIG Fraud Hotline Our mission is to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access. Student Loans Repaying Loans Defaulted Loans Loan Forgiveness Loan Servicers Grants & Programs Apply for Pell Grants Grants Forecast Open Grant Competitions Find Grant Programs by Eligibility Laws & Guidance No Child Left Behind FERPA Civil Rights Data & Research Education Statistics Postsecondary Education Data State Education Data Nation's Report Card What Works Clearinghouse About Us Contact Us ED Offices Jobs News FAQs Budget, Performance Notices FOIAPrivacySecurityInformation qualityInspector GeneralWhitehouse.govUSA.govBenefits.govRegulations.gov
Grand Jury Indictment for Pell Grant Fraud Miami, Florida, June 30, 2000
Published by the Department of Education, Office of Inspector General on 2000-06-30.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report.