Woman Convicted of Defrauding USDA’s Summer Food Service Program
NORFOLK, Va. – A federal jury convicted a Hampton woman today for her role in a fraud conspiracy related to a federally funded summer food service program.
According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Shaun Brown, 59, defrauded the USDA’s summer food service program (SFSP) aimed at feeding low income children. Brown and her mother ran a non-profit company, JOBS Community Development Corporation, which served as a sponsor for the SFSP. Over the course of the 2012 Summer, Brown inflated the number of meals JOBS purportedly served to low-income children and submitted four fraudulent claims for reimbursement based on the inflated numbers. Brown also orchestrated a massive scheme to falsify hundreds of documents to support her fraudulently inflated meal count numbers. Additionally, Brown ordered excessive amounts of food and milk products which she was well aware would never be used to feed needy children. At her direction, Brown’s employees disposed of this food and milk, purchased with federal funds, in large mounds behind buildings in Newport News as well as a pig farm in Southern Virginia. As a result of her fraudulent actions, the USDA paid JOBS over $800,000 in federal funds.
Brown was convicted of conspiracy, two counts of wire fraud, and one count of theft of government funds and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison when sentenced on March 13, 2019. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Michael C. Westfall, State Inspector General of Virginia, and Colonel Gary T. Settle, Superintendent of Virginia State Police, made the announcement after Senior U.S. District Judge Henry Coke Morgan, Jr. accepted the verdict. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Elizabeth M. Yusi and Melissa E. O’Boyle are prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:17-cr-169.