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‘This is the stuff that happens in mob movies’

(Photo by Celyn Kang on Unsplash)

A wrinkle suddenly has appeared in a federal case in Minnesota in which the federal government alleges seven defendants stole millions of dollars of COVID aid funds – intended for the federal Child Nutrition Program through the Feeding Our Future charity — and bought cars, homes and vacations.

Delivered to the home of one juror hearing evidence was a bag containing $120,000 in cash.

Along with instructions to vote for acquittal.

The result was that all seven of the defendants were re-arrested, the courthouse where the trial was taking place was locked down, and more.

A report in the Post-Millennial explains that the seven are “part of a larger case that has seen 70 charged with stealing a total of $250 million in COVID aid.”

“They allegedly delivered few, if any, meals,” the report said.

The wrinkle happened over the weekend when juror No. 52 arrived home “to find that someone had dropped off a gift bag containing $120,000 in cash with a promise of ‘more’ if she moved to find the defendants in the case not guilty.”

The 23-year-old opted to call law enforcement immediately, the report said.

“As a result, all seven defendants accused of using a charity to steal $41 million in federal aid meant to go towards feeding children in need were re-arrested at the request of United States Assistant Attorney Joe Thompson,” the report said.

The juror was released from the panel and the remaining members were sequestered to prevent further attempts to tamper with justice.

The report explained the juror got home, and was told by her father-in-law a woman “possibly Somali,” with an accent gave him the gift bag for delivery to the juror, “whose real name she knew.”

“An affidavit stated, ‘The woman told the relative to tell Juror #52 to say not guilty tomorrow and there would be more of that present tomorrow,'” the report said.

The cash was turned over to the FBI, which was joined by the Spring Lake Park police department in its investigation.

The report said the defendants were arrested, had their phones confiscated and were ordered not to leave the courthouse, and the rest of Monday’s proceedings continued.

The jurors then started deliberating.

“This is the stuff that happens in mob movies,” attorney Joe Thompson said.

Commentator Charlie Kirk explained, “The defense, meanwhile, is hiring college professors to lecture that scamming the government and sending suitcases full of cash abroad is a part of Somali culture, and trying to stop them is of course ‘racist.'”

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