Cosmetology school owner convicted of Pell Grant fraud

Cosmetology school owner convicted of Pell Grant fraud

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A cosmetology school's owner has been convicted of charges she forged and falsified students' financial aid records to steal more than $100,000 in federal grant money.

A federal jury on Thursday found Alden Hall, 58, of Baton Rouge guilty of charges of theft of government funds, fraudulently obtaining financial assistance funds and money laundering in connection with her multi-year scheme to defraud the U.S. Department of Education and steal Pell Grant funds.

According to acting U.S. Attorney Corey Amundson's Office, after a four-day trial, the jury unanimously found Hall guilty on all five counts she was charged with.

Hall is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 30.

According to reports, at the time of these crimes Hall owned Alden's School of Cosmetology and Alden's School of Barbering on Main St. in Baker.

Amundson's office said in a statement that Hall submitted documents to the U.S. Department of Education that misrepresented students' eligibility for Pell Grant funds.

Prosecutors also accused her of falsifying records of classroom hours for students who never attended classes.

Through the schemes, prosecutors say Hall and her businesses fraudulently received more than $100,000 in federal funds. They say in December 2011 she laundered money from the school's bank account to her own through a check she issued to herself.

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