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Press Release

Cleveland Man Charged With Fraudulently Receiving $55,000 In Student Financial Aid

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Ohio

A Cleveland man was indicted on charges that he fraudulently received up to $55,000 in federal student financial aid funds, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. 

Robert Williams, 35, faces one count of theft of federal student financial aid funds.

The indictment alleges that Williams enrolled in approximately six different Ohio colleges between 2007 and 2012 in order to receive Department of Education and Department of Veterans Affairs federal student aid benefits, despite the fact that he had no intention of obtaining a degree. 

Williams used the federal student aid funds for his own personal use and enjoyment, according to the indictment.

Assistant United States Attorney Matthew J. Cronin is prosecuting the case following an investigation by the Department of Education -- Office of Inspector General and the Department of Veterans Affairs -- Office of Inspector General.

If convicted, the Court will determine the defendant’s sentence after a review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense, and the characteristics of the violation.  In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum.  In most cases, it will be less than the maximum.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt.  A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government's burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated March 12, 2015