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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Louisiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 18, 2014

Former Non-Profit Director Sentenced for Defrauding Government Agencies

U.S. Attorney Kenneth Allen Polite, Jr. announced that MARCIA PETERSON, of Gretna, was sentenced yesterday for defrauding several federal and state agencies.

U.S. District Judge Martin L.C. Feldman sentenced PETERSON to 15 months imprisonment, to be followed by 36 months of supervised release.  Additionally, PETERSON was ordered to pay $91,492.41 in restitution.

According to court documents, PETERSON was sentenced after having pled guilty in August to two counts of theft of government funds and one count of wire fraud.  PETERSON was the executive director and accountant for CDC 58:12, a non-profit with a stated mission of transforming communities by creating opportunities in housing, education, health, and economic development.  From 2011 through 2013, PETERSON improperly withdrew approximately $87,000 in federal grant funds from CDC’s bank account and spent the money on gambling and other personal expenses.  Additionally, from August 2012 to December 2012, while working for CDC, PETERSON falsely claimed to the Louisiana Workforce Commission that she was out of work in order to receive $4,199 in unemployment insurance benefits.

U.S. Attorney Polite praised the work of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development - Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Department of Education - Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Department of Labor - Office of Inspector General, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in investigating this matter.  Assistant United States Attorney Chandra Menon was in charge of the prosecution.

Updated December 18, 2014