The former WWE wrestler is accused of stealing millions from Mississippi welfare

Jackson, Miss. (WJTV) — On Thursday, a federal indictment was unsealed in Mississippi accusing former professional wrestler Theodore “Ted” Marvin DiBiase Jr., 40, of murder. Misappropriation of millions in federal safety net funds for families in need and low-income individuals in Mississippi.

According to court documents, DiBiase, along with the co-conspirators John DavisKristi Webb New Nancyand others, have fraudulently obtained federal funds, including from the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program (TANF).

DiBiase, son of WWE superstar Ted DiBiase, Sr. (aka “The Million Dollar Man”) was a WWE wrestler in the 2000s. according to NBC NewsDiBiase signed with the company in 2007 and wrestled under WWE until 2013.

Davis was the executive director of the Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS).

as part of alleged schemeAfter the federal funds were released to MDHS, plaintiffs said Davis directed MDHS to sub-grant the funds to two nonprofit organizations, the Family Resource Center of Northern Mississippi Inc (FRC) and the Mississippi Community Education Center (MCEC), which are operated by Webb and New, respectively. .

Davis allegedly directed web What’s new is the awarding of sham contracts to several individuals and entities alleged to provide social services, including at least five sham contracts awarded to DiBiase, Priceless Ventures LLC, and Familiae Orientem LLC.

According to the indictment, the FRC and MCEC each provided millions of dollars in federal funds from MDHS to DiBiase and his companies for social services that DiBiase did not and did not intend to provide. DiBiase allegedly used this federal money to purchase a car and boat, and for a down payment on a home.

DiBiase was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and committing theft related to programs receiving federal funds, six counts of wire fraud, two counts of theft related to programs receiving federal funds, and four counts of money laundering.

Prosecutors decide who to accuse of a crime, and we are grateful to see them continue to move forward with this case. “We will continue to support their efforts with evidence uncovered by our investigators and federal investigators,” said State Auditor Chad White.

If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison for conspiracy, a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for each count of wire fraud, and a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for each count of theft related to software that receives federal funds. Money and every money laundering crime.

dibiase brother, Former professional wrestler Brett DiBiasehas pleaded guilty to state and federal charges associated with the case.

A welfare malpractice scandal has ensnared high-profile figures, including the retired NFL quarterback Brett Favrewho does not face criminal charges but is among more than thirty defendants in a civil suit brought by the current Director of Human Services to try to recover some of the welfare money wasted while Davis was in charge.

Mississippi ranked among the poorest states in the United States for decades, but only a fraction of its federal welfare money was going toward direct assistance to families. Instead, the Mississippi Department of Human Services allowed well-connected people to distribute tens of millions of welfare dollars from 2016 to 2019, according to state auditors and federal prosecutors.

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White said Temporary Assistance to Needy Families money has helped pay for pet projects for the wealthy, including $5 million for a Favre-supported volleyball court at his alma mater, the University of Southern Mississippi. Favre’s daughter played volleyball at the school starting in 2017.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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