“Rich Folks Ripping Off The System”: Wealthy Couple Steals $167,000 In Welfare Benefits
A wealthy couple with $3 million in the bank, a yacht, and a luxurious home near Lake Minnetoka raked in $167,000 in social safety net benefits for six years! The authorities have finally caught up to the twosome’s schemes and they are being charged with welfare fraud, Raw Story reports.
Benefit employees were deceived and led to believe that Andrea and Colin Chisholm were unemployed and had as little as $80 to their name. So they had no choice but to live in Andrea’s mother’s home with their son in south Minneapolis.
Lies, all lies.
When filing out their welfare forms, the Chisholms conveniently forgot to mention their $1.2 million yacht and their $1.6 million home near Lake Minnetoka. In fact, Colin, 62, is reportedly a Scottish aristocrat who’s currently a broadcasting executive for his Miami-based satellite TV company. Colin has allegedly told investors that he’s got assets worth $97 million.
His wife, 54-year-old Andrea, helped run the Chisholm’s business of breeding pedigreed Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.
Still, “Lord and Lady Chisholm” — as Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman calls them — managed to reel in $167,420 from federal assistance programs for medical claims and food stamps between 2005 and 2012. The birth of the couple’s son in 2007 cost Minnesota $22,000 in hospital bills!
“These were rich folks ripping off the system,” said Freeman at a news conference last Friday. “I will make sure they do hard time.”
Fraud investigators got suspicious after they discovered that the couple had a lakeview home and spent $60,000 of their medical claims on spas and massages.
“It’s outrageous,” Freeman said. “You hear of people getting public assistance when they’re having a hard time in their lives and getting it back together. And then you see this.” You also hear a lot of people accusing the poor of fraud, but ahem…
The Minnesota couple hid their wealth from authorities by funneling hundreds of thousands of dollars to Andrea’s grandmother. Their welfare checks stopped pouring in on March 2012 when the duo couldn’t explain how they could afford to pay their rent, and other expenses, while being unemployed.
The con artists, if convicted, could face 20 years in jail along with a $100,000 fine. There is one problem though — the couple is nowhere to be found!
The Chisholms have fled; they’ve vacated their home and pulled their son out of school. The only lead that authorities have, to our knowledge, is that “they’ve gone somewhere warm, if not out of the country entirely,” Raw Story concludes.