Pell Grant Crook Pleads Guilty to $11M Fraud

     MANHATTAN (CN) – After 13 years on the lam, a man who defrauded the Pell Grant program and Small Business Administration of more than $11 million pleaded guilty Monday to federal charges. Avrum David Friesel faces up to 5 years in prison at his June 15 sentencing. He agreed to pay restitution of $11.6 million.

     Friesel fled to Israel in 1997 and then lammed it to the United Kingdom. He enlisted people who were not in college to help him defraud the Pell Grant program of millions of dollars, and also defrauded other state and federal agencies, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
     Five other members of his ring have been sentenced to prison and a sixth is awaiting sentencing. The last defendant, Nathan Adler, remains at large.

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