An Idaho woman who operated a fertility brokerage business has admitted to defrauding six Missouri women who provided eggs for the business.
Janae Helgerson of Boise, Idaho, pleaded guilty Wednesday to wire fraud in U.S. District Court in St. Louis. Sentencing is March 16.
Helgerson was arrested in February. Her business, Mid-West Egg Donation, matched couples seeking to conceive a baby with women willing to provide eggs. Federal prosecutors say Helgerson collected payments from couples, but egg donors in Missouri failed to receive nearly $30,000 owed to them.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Fred W. Robinson, 69, of St. Louis, and chairman of the board of trustees for Paideia Academy, a now-shuttered charter school in St. Louis, has been indicted multiple fraud charges.
Governor Jay Nixon has signed into law legislation designed to protect Missouri farmers from dishonest or financially struggling grain dealers.
The measure comes out of what state officials call the largest grain fraud scheme in Missouri history: Prosecutors charged Cathy Gieseker with defrauding 180 grain farmers out of at least $27 million as her business went under. She pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and is now in prison.