Paso Robles woman indicted for $35 million fraud scheme

September 3, 2009

By KAREN VELIE

A Federal Grand Jury has indicted a Paso Robles woman on charges she submitting a forged application in an attempt to obtain $35 million in grant money from the U.S. Department of Education, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office Public Affairs Officer Thom Mrozek.

Jean Michele Cross, 57, is also accused of concealing a 15 percent fee she had negotiated for successfully submitting grant applications.

The indictment alleges Cross submitted the forged grant application on March 12, 2007 on behalf of the Indio Youth Task Force (IYTF). The Department of Education awarded the non-profit $6.9 million per year, over five years, in December 2007.

“In April 2008, after improprieties about the grant application process surfaced, IYTF returned the check,” Mrozek said in a press release. “The indictment alleges Cross altered and forged signatures and documents.”

In addition, investigators from multiple agencies including the Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S. Department of Education allege Cross forged and altered documents from several other educational entities including Desert Sands Unified School District, Perris Elementary School District, and Nuview Unified School District.

Cross has been charged with forgery, mail fraud, and making false statements. She faces a maximum penalty of 35 years in federal prison if convicted.

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One Comment

  1. ccn_debate says:

    Member Opinions:
    By: cheseburger on 9/11/09
    Unethical business practices, taught to her by 21 Century, fraud is contagious, she figured they did it to her, now she do it to our children, corruption has no sole, greed has no eyes to see the pain it’s caused. And if you stick your fingers in your ears, you won’t hear her scream when they give her 35 years in prison.

    By: NorthCountyGuy on 9/7/09
    The crooks in North County and South County must be collaborating so as to “Share the wealth”.

    By: Nancimeek on 9/4/09
    Is this the same Jean Cross who owns a home in Santa Barbara on Seaview purchased for 2.2 million in 2005? And another on Warren Road in Paso Robles? Maybe it isn’t the same Jean Cross WOW if it is then I am in the wrong line of work.

    By: Paso_Guy on 9/4/09
    Hotdog

    It’s the lack of water.
    Noth county folks stay awake long hours thinking of creative ways to defraud, rob and steal.

    By: JorgeEstrada on 9/4/09
    Ok, how about a 35 million dollar Cross word puzzle? 1 down, sounds like a good defense. thedevilmadem_doit

    By: hotdog on 9/3/09
    Right on Clementine. And I will start the chorus, what’s up with our crooked north county? Just how many crooks do we have up there? Is it the climate, the water, what?

    By: Clemintine on 9/3/09
    At the same time schools are struggling with their budgets and laying off desperately needed teachers this woman is skimming a cool 15% of 35 million destined for childrens education.

    Somebody get a rope!

    By: Clemintine on 9/3/09
    Is this the same Jean Cross who filed a complaint against the hard money lender, 21st Century/Linda Kennedy, that was reported by the New Times some time ago. As I understood the article Cross complained of fraud and unethical business practices.

    Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!

    (2) 6 Total Votes - 4 up - 2 down

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