Democrat State Senator Steals $600,000 in Public Funds to Pay for Lavish Lifestyle
This week, the Department of Justice announced that they have charged Tennessee State Senator Katrina Robinson with embezzlement involving federal programs and wire fraud, for allegedly stealing $600,000 in federal funds to pay for her lavish lifestyle.
In a statement, U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, “Tennessee State Senator Katrina Robinson, 39, has been federally charged with theft and embezzlement involving government programs and wire fraud.”
According to the complaint, Robinson had used her position as a Director of The Healthcare Institute (THI), an organization that provides educational and training programs for people who wanted to work in the healthcare industry. Documents proved that between 2015 to 2019, the organization had received more than $2 million in federal grants from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
However, instead of using the taxpayer’s money to provide additional training and facilities, Robinson stole a whopping $600,000 to fund her lavish lifestyle. The complaint reads that Robinson used the money by “compensating herself in excess of what was allowed under the terms of the HRSA grant and by using Institute funds for payments and purchases for her own personal benefit and that of her immediate family.”
In fact, Robinson used the federal grant to pay for her wedding, honeymoon, and worse, her eventual divorce. The long list of expenses also includes a vehicle for her daughter, buying entertainment tickets and lavish vacations for her and her family, as well as hair, and beauty products, and even charging the public for her own home renovations. The state senator also used the federal grant to pay off her own debt including student loans, credit card debts, personal loans, and even store charge cards. She had also used the money to build her own businesses including expenses to an aesthetic business she owned, as well as a snow cone business that was managed by her children. To top it all off, Robinson also spent the money on funding her own political campaign as State Senator.
Dunavant claimed that the administration is working hard to protect federal grant programs from theft, fraud, waste, and most especially abuse from elected officials. He also praised the FBI and the HHS-OIG for launching the investigation. Acting Special Agent in Charge Jermicha L. Fomby of the Memphis Field Office of the FBI also warned that any attempt to take advantage of federal programs will be “vigorously investigated” regardless of their power or position. Fomby vowed that the Bureau will work “diligently’ to make people accountable.
If convicted, Robinson will be facing up to 20 years in prison, and a fine of $250,000. Despite the mounting accusation, The Tennessee Senate Democratic Caucus defended the State Senator. The Caucus claimed that the allegations should be discussed in “court of law, not by public opinion.”
On Thursday, Federal prosecutors also charged another Democrat, Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar in a 34-count indictment. After his arrest, the FBI alleged Huizar of bribery, money laundering, 42 acts of corruption, and several criminal charges.