Boston BLM Leader And Husband Charged With Fraud, Allegedly Spent Donations For At-Risk Youth On Food And Travel

(Photo by Joseph Prezioso / AFP) (Photo by JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images)

Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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Boston Black Lives Matter leader Monica Cannon-Grant and her husband, Clark Grant, were charged Tuesday with an 18-count indictment.

Prosecutors allege that Cannon-Grant, 41, and Grant, 38, defrauded donors, illegally collected an estimated $100,000 in pandemic unemployment benefits and lied on a mortgage application, according to the Boston Globe.

Cannon-Grant and her husband raised over $1 million for the needy, but a substantial amount of the money raised by the couple was spent on vacations, rent payments and gifts for family members, federal prosecutors alleged according to the Boston Globe.  It is not presently known how much money was used for purposes other than running their nonprofit, but certain amounts have been released to the public, according to the Boston Globe.

In 2019, Cannon-Grant was given a $6,000 grant to be used on a trip to Philadelphia for at-risk youth, “to give these young men exposure to communities outside of the violence-riddled neighborhood that they navigate daily,” according to the Boston Globe. Instead, Cannon-Grant and her husband allegedly used the money to go on vacation to Maryland, where they rented a car, bought groceries, shopped at Walmart, visited a nail salon, and dined at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., Shake Shack and other restaurants, the Boston Globe reported.

The check was given to Cannon-Grant and her husband’s nonprofit group, Violence in Boston, Inc, after Cannon-Grant became a prominent local leader in the Black Lives Matter movement, the Boston Globe continued. (RELATED: Some Boston ‘Black Lives Matter’ Protesters Refuse To Defend Their Actions [VIDEO])

The prosecutors alleged that in October 2020, Cannon-Grant started to pay herself almost $2,800 a week, the Globe reported. She did not report any salary to the IRS and told the state attorney general’s charity division that she did not receive a salary for her work with Violence in Boston.

Cannon-Grant was arrested in her home Tuesday, but her husband was already facing criminal charges related to illegally collecting unemployment benefits, the New York Post noted.

Cannon-Grant appeared briefly in front of US Magistrate Judge Judith Dein, who released the accused, the Globe continued. Cannon-Grant is able to continue working with her nonprofit but cannot handle any of the organization’s finances.

Cannon-Grant’s attorney told reporters outside of Boston’s federal courthouse that, “VIB [Violence in Boston] and Monica have been fully cooperating and their production of records remains ongoing. Drawing conclusions from an incomplete factual record does not represent the fair and fully informed process a citizen deserves from its government, especially someone like Monica who has worked tirelessly on behalf of her community. We remain fully confident Monica will be vindicated when a complete factual record emerges,” according to the Globe.