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East St. Louis Couple Plead Guilty to Federal Student Aid Fraud, Mail Fraud, and Wire Fraud

May 1, 2013

On April 29, 2013, Antwayne B. Crumble, a thirty-year old East St. Louis, IL, man and Danyelle T. McNeil, a twenty-nine year old East St. Louis, IL, woman, pled guilty in federal district court, in East St. Louis, to conspiracy to commit federal student aid fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. Crumble and McNeil's sentencing date is to be scheduled, at which time both face a maximum potential five years' in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, not more than three years' of supervised release after their prison term, and a mandatory special assessment of $100.

Court proceedings revealed that on or about September 1, 2008, through September 28, 2009, Crumble and McNeil, who were involved in a romantic relationship, used personal identifying information received from family and friends to complete online applications for enrollment as undergraduate students at the University of Phoenix. After participants were accepted, they became eligible to receive federal student aid. Crumble and McNeil used newly enrolled students' personal information to make applications for federal student aid, including Pell Grant funds and student loan funds. After refund checks were disbursed to participants, online coursework ceased causing class enrollments to be terminated for inactivity. Crumble and McNeil split the student loan refund proceeds between themselves and the enrollees, all of whom spent the money on personal expenditures rather than any legitimate educational expenses.

This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Education and assigned to Special Assistant United States Attorney Matthew H. Brooks for prosecution.

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Last Modified: 05/03/2013