Laplace Woman Charged with Stealing Federal Student Aid Funds and Identity Theft
United States Attorney Peter G. Strasser announced that KENDRA GRAVES, age 31, was charged on January 31, 2019 in a two-count bill of information with theft of government funds, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 641 and identity theft in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028(a)(7).
According to court documents, GRAVES falsified federal student loan applications and used the stolen student aid monies valued at approximately $200,000 for her own personal use. As part of her scheme to defraud, GRAVES applied for federal financial aid at Delgado Community College in the name of 15 individuals without their knowledge or consent.
If convicted, GRAVES faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years and a fine of $250,000 as to Count 1 and 15 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 as to Count 2. GRAVES also faces three (3) years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment and a $200 special assessment fee.
U.S. Attorney Strasser reiterated that a bill of information is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
U.S. Attorney Strasser praised the work of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in investigating this matter. Assistant United States Attorney Julia K. Evans is in charge of the prosecution.