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Ex-Conyers official gets prison for embezzling $130K for waterslide, Xmas decor
(News release this afternoon by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia)
FORMER HOUSING AUTHORITY DIRECTOR SENTENCED
Atlanta, GA – KRISTI KIRKUS WILSON, 45, of Conyers, Georgia, the former Executive Director for the Conyers, Georgia, Public Housing Authority, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Thomas W. Thrash, Jr., to serve 1 year, 6 months in federal prison for stealing over $130,000 from housing programs receiving federal funds.
Acting United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said of today’s sentence, “Ms. Wilson was entrusted with funds intended for use by the Housing Authority. She violated that trust when she embezzled over $130,000, and now she is going to prison.”
Kenneth Donohue, Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) said, “The message here is clear: if you do business with HUD and try to defraud, we’re coming after you. We are motivated to do so because like most American taxpayers, we are appalled that some people try to manipulate these programs at the expense of families in need.”
WILSON was sentenced to 1 year, 6 months in prison to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $150,000. WILSON pleaded guilty to the charge on June 3, 2009.
According to Acting United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: between 2000 and 2007, WILSON, the Executive Director for the Conyers Public Housing Authority, embezzled more than $130,000 of housing authority funds that came through HUD grants. WILSON misused Conyers Housing Authority credit cards for vacation expenses, local meals, and personal items for her home, including a waterslide, a barn, perimeter fencing, outdoor Christmas decorations and Christmas gifts and parties for housing authority employees. WILSON also approved and paid bonuses for herself as well as padding her and her husband’s salaries.
This case was investigated by Special Agents of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of the Inspector General for Criminal Investigations.
Assistant United States Attorney David Leta prosecuted the case.