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Friday, Oct 24, 2014
Crime & Courts

Sarasota man pleads guilty to taking money from charity


Published:

A 45-year-old man pleaded guilty today to defrauding a summer youth program in Sarasota by double billing organizations and keeping the extra revenue.

Lyndon Jones of Sarasota faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.

According to a plea agreement, released by acting U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III, Jones was executive director of ManUp of Greater Sarasota, which ran a summer youth program to assist local youth. From at least June 19, 2009, and to about September 29, 2011, Jones stole at least $76,707.12 in federal funds from a Community Development Block Grant, which he used for his own benefit.

The government said Jones stole the funds by submitting duplicate bills for the hours worked by the students. One set of billing went to the grant administrator, and a second to the students’ employers, which included Sarasota Manatee Airport and Sarasota Memorial Hospital. Both of the organizations paid Jones so he could pay the students. But, Jones kept the second set of payments for himself, the release said.

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