News and Press Releases

Richmond Woman Sentenced for Defrauding the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 19, 2014

NORFOLK, Va. – Kimberly Gregory, 54, of Richmond, Va., was sentenced today to twenty months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for defrauding the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Dana J. Boente, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, made the announcement after sentencing by Chief United States District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith.

Gregory pleaded guilty to the charge of making a false statement on November 19, 2013.  According to court documents, Gregory defrauded the Veteran Affairs (VA) out of educational benefits.  Gregory ran a beauty school in Richmond called Become New Beauty (BNB) and was certified by the VA to receive educational funds for veterans enrolled in its programs.  Rose Simmons, who ran a beauty school called Advanced Cosmetology Institute (ACI) located in Chesapeake, was not certified by the VA to receive VA educational funds for veterans enrolled in that school.  In order to tap into the veteran funds, Simmons and Gregory agreed to falsely submit claims to the VA for ACI students by falsely stating that they were attending BNB.  In addition, they raised the tuition of BNB from approximately $5,000 to nearly $17,000.  Gregory and Simmons caused a loss to the government in excess of $85,000.   Simmons also pled guilty on November 14, 2013 and will be sentenced in April. 

This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, Office of Inspector General.  Assistant United States Attorney Joseph Kosky prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.justice.gov/usao/vae. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on https://pcl.uscourts.gov.

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