FBI Probe Of Orthodox Yeshivas Now Eyeing School Lunch Frauds

Brooklyn, NY – As speculation continues to swirl regarding the recent widespread FBI raids in Ramapo, Kiryas Joel and Brooklyn, an employee at a Williamsburg yeshiva has said that the searches may encompass a wider scope than originally thought.

According to the Forward, the source said that officials in Williamsburg’s Central United Talmudical Academy have stated that FBI agents who visited their school on March 16th were looking for information on the National School Lunch Program, which provides free or reduced rate meals to low income students.

A spokesperson for the FBI told the Forward that the raids in Brooklyn were not connected to the raids in Ramapo and Kiryas Joel.

Spokespersons from the different divisions of the U.S. Attorney’s office that are carrying out the investigations and the New York City’s Department of Investigations all declined to comment on the raids.

The source said that investigators from the NSLP made an unannounced visit to Central UTA in Williamsburg two weeks prior to the FBI raids, prompting other area schools to be more careful with their NSLP spending over the last few weeks.

According to the Forward, the Satmar school system received $14.7 million in federal and state NSLP funds in 2011 and 2012, an amount that exceeded the allotment given to the Buffalo City School District by more than $2 million.

Satmar spokesperson Michael Tobman declined to comment on any aspects of the ongoing investigation.

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