MIAMI - The Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office announced charges Friday against a man who, prosecutors say, defrauded the Children's Trust out of thousands of dollars.
Larrie Lovett, II, was arrested Friday.
According to investigators, Lovett served as the Chairman and Director of the Brownsville Community Development Corp., Inc. (BCDC), which received grants from The Children's Trust. Lovett used some of the money from the grants for his personal use.
According to prosecutors, the BCDC received more than $1.6 million in grant funds from the Children's Trust to fund a program to curb violent crimes involving youth from 2007 through 2009. Lovett fraudulently obtained more than $112,000 in Children's Trust funds by submitting false invoices and false proof of payments.
The money was supposed to go to service for the Brownsville community as a reimbursement grant, said prosecutors. The money would then be reimbursed by the Children's Trust.
Regis House, Solid Rock Enterprise, Non-violence Project, and Boaz Group were supposed to receive monies. When discrepancies were noted, the Children's Trust told the Office of the Inspector General.
Investigators said Lovett used some of the funds on: a trip to Chicago on behalf of the church he ministers, trips to Los Angeles and Tucson, a stay at the Marriott Imperial Palms during a personal vacation, a rent payment for his home, personal car payments, personal car rentals, utility payments, and cash withdrawn at ATM's during holidays or personal trips.
Many who live in Brownsville knew Lovett.
"I know he's a pastor at that church down there," said one woman. "Everybody's innocent until proven guilty."
Lovett is charged with organized scheme to defraud, a first-degree felony, and grand theft, a second-degree felony. He is being held on $20,000 bond.
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