Paideia Academy
4:23 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Former Paideia Academy Board Chairman Convicted On Federal Fraud Charges

Fred W. Robinson, 71, a former chairman of the board of shuttered charter school Paideia Academy, and former employee of the City of St. Louis' treasurer's office, has been convicted on federal fraud charges, the U.S. Attorney's Office says.

As we previously reported, Robinson was indicted back in Sept. 2011 on charges that not only stemmed from his involvement with the school but also with his post at the Treasurer's Office, where he was charged with submitting false timesheets.

Here's the Attorney's Office's account of the details of Robinson's conviction:

According to testimony presented at trial, during 2009 and 2010, Robinson diverted approximately $242,333 of Paideia Academy funds for the purchase, construction, renovation and rehabilitation of a building at 4028 West Florissant Avenue in St. Louis for the purpose of developing and operating a Little People’s Academy day care center to be operated by Robinson and an associate through Paige C. Investments, LLC, which Robinson had a ownership and financial interest.  Robinson failed to disclose his ownership and financial interest in the proposed day care center to the Paideia Academy Board of Trustees.  Robinson’s partner in the proposed day care center, was a friend and associate of Robinson who worked as a bartender at a lounge frequented by Robinson, and who had no background, experience or training in early childhood education or the operations of a day care center.

Additionally, during each year from 2006 through 2010, as an employee of the Treasurer’s Office for the City of St. Louis, submitted false weekly time sheets falsely certifying work hours and was paid approximately $35,360 each year in salary based upon those false time sheets.

Robinson was convicted of the following:

  • One count of wire fraud (maximum 20 years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000), and
  • Seven felony counts of federal program theft (each count carries a maximum 10 years in prison and or up to $250,000 in fines).

Sentencing has been set for July 19, 2013. 

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