News


Three Charged in Multi-County Grant Scam

 
 

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) Orlando Regional Operations Center today charged three individuals as part of a grant fraud scam that spanned at least five Florida counties and is believed to have stretched into multiple other states. Agents arrested Carlton J. Smith, 52, forone count of organized scheme to defraud, 34 counts of communications fraud, and one count of money laundering. Outstanding warrants exist for Irma Michelle Jackson-Stewart, 38, for one count of organized scheme to defraud, 34 counts of communications fraud, and one count of money laundering and James H. Stewart, 51, for one count of organized scheme to defraud. All three are residents of Orlando, Fla. and the two individuals still wanted are believed to be in the Central Florida.   They are the listed owners of a company named IM Credit Solutions and Grant Writer Consultant, Inc.
 
Investigators allege that between April 2010 and May 2011, Jackson-Stewart, Smith and Stewart claimed they could write grants for people that would enable them to receive money from the federal government for personal and business expenditures. The three would charge people $300 to $500 for a “grant application fee,” fabricate a grant approval document, and then never write a grant or file any grant requests. The trio promoted their services through churches, businesses, residential visits and paid advertising. No federal grants were ever available, and none of the victims ever received money.

 
Investigators have identified 2,116 victims who have combined total losses in excess of $331,000. 
 
The investigation remains ongoing and anyone with information about the whereabouts of Jackson-Stewart or Stewart is asked to call FDLE Special Agent Luis Negrete at (407) 245-0801.
 
The case is being prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Office of Statewide Prosecution.
 
For Further Information Contact:
Heather Smith, Keith Kameg or Kristi Gordon
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001
 
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