Prosecutors in Florida have told jurors a former congresswoman financed a lavish lifestyle of Beverly Hills shopping trips and fancy parties on donations to a charity ostensibly set up to help poor children with scholarships.
Testimony will continue for a second day Thursday in the trial of former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, 70. She has pleaded not guilty to multiple fraud and conspiracy charges. Prosecutors have laid out an expansive case in U.S. District Court, charting years of payments they say were funneled from the charity to her personal bank accounts.
“She knew exactly how to lie to these donors, and knew exactly where the cash money was going,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney A. Tysen Duva in his opening statement Wednesday.
Lawyers presented two opposing portraits of Brown to the federal jury in Jacksonville, part of a district the former Democratic congresswoman had represented since 1993. One was of an entitled, corrupt politician and the other that of a befuddled, aging lawmaker whose trusted adviser betrayed her. Her attorney James Smith said she was duped by her former chief of staff, Elias “Ronnie” Simmons.
Federal prosecutors said Brown and her associates used a charity called One Door for Education to bring in more than $800,000 between 2012 and 2016, much of which they used for lavish trips, tickets to a Beyoncé concert, shopping excursions in Beverly Hills and other personal expenses.
Brown’s indictment says the Virginia-based One Door only gave out one scholarship for $1,200 to an unidentified person in Florida.
Meanwhile, prosecutors said, Brown and two of her closest associates — Simmons and former One Door President Carla Wiley — were transferring donations to their personal accounts. Simmons and Wiley already have pleaded guilty and are expected to testify against Brown.
Brown is a Clinton Superdelegate and she faces hard jail time for ripping-off school kids and college fees.
Corrine Brown May Get 357 Years In Jail!
By Rachel Moore – March 18, 2017
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Criminals in America run free only because they once played an important role in the world of politics, and by “criminals” we mean Obama, Hillary, and many of their fellow Democrats. Most Americans agree that the former president should be put behind bars for the damage he caused to his country. But, the good news is that his closest allies are going to jail, one at a time.
Congresswoman Corrine Brown may get 357 years in prison and $48 million in fines for her “sticky hands.” Brown stole scholarship money, and that’s the worst harm one can do to children. The Congresswoman funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars from One Door for Education straight into her criminal pocket.