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Lula woman sentenced to federal prison

50-year-old, daughter both pleaded guilty to fraud charges

POSTED: July 11, 2008 5:01 a.m.
A Lula woman was sentenced Monday in Gainesville to four years and nine months in federal prison on tax-related fraud charges.

Molly A. Smith, 50, also was placed on three years of supervised release and ordered by U.S. District Judge William C. O’Kelley to pay restitution of $413,847 to the IRS and $777,901 to North Carolina.

Smith pleaded guilty to program fraud and tax fraud on Feb. 27.

Her daughter, Maykie Blevins, 29, also of Lula, pleaded guilty to tax fraud on March 17. Her sentencing is set for July 16.

Smith headed up Georgia Nutrition Program, or GNP, a nonprofit corporation based in Lula.

She altered certain applications and submitted false information to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services to receive more than $775,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to U.S. Attorney David E. Nahmias.

Smith then wrote checks from GNP’s accounts payable to herself, her husband and her daughter.

The checks were deposited into the personal accounts of Smith and Blevins and used to buy property, jewelry, home improvements and vehicles, Nahmias said.

Smith then provided copies of the checks to her accountant after they were altered to appear as if the checks had been written to cover GNP expenses — primarily payments made to the child care centers that GNP sponsored.

Also, Nahmias said, the money the mother and daughter received was not recorded as income on their individual federal income tax returns.



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