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Sat Mar 2, 2019, 09:04 AM

Former head of children's food program gets 33 months in federal prison in fraud case

PEORIA — Nora L. Steele, of Silvis, the former operations director of the Quad Cities Area Children’s Food Program, was sentenced Tuesday in federal court to 33 months in federal prison.

Through the QCACFP, at-risk youth were served meals at numerous Quad-Cities area locations, according to federal authorities. The meals often were combined with learning or care programs operated by the YMCA or Spring Forward Learning. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reimbursed the QCACFP per meal.

On Sept. 19, 2018, Steele pleaded guilty to defrauding the U.S. Department of Agriculture and filing a false tax return, according to authorities. She chose to waive indictment on the charges when she did so. At the September hearing, she admitted that from August 2015 through June 2017 she recorded more meal count forms at Church of Peace and QCACFP than actually were served when she filed for federal reimbursement.

Chief U.S. District Judge James E. Shadid sentenced her during a Tuesday afternoon hearing in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois’ Peoria courthouse. She must also serve one year of mandatory supervised release and pay about $525,000 in restitution to the federal government. She must turn herself into the U.S. Marshal's Service on March 12, Shadid said.

Read more: https://qconline.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/former-head-of-children-s-food-program-gets-months-in/article_a581ac32-0bd3-5788-9ffa-f6caea7ce005.html

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