Back in May, the Mississippi Department of Human Services named Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre in a lawsuit seeking to recoup roughly $24 million in misspent welfare funds intended to combat poverty in one of the nation’s poorest states.
The lawsuit filed seeks $3.2 million combined from Favre and Favre Enterprises, Inc.
According to a new court filing, former Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant directed a woman to give NFL legend Brett Favre $1.1 million. Nancy New, who is friends with Bryant’s wife, along with her son Zach, has pleaded guilty to several criminal charges, including bribery and fraud.
In that plea agreement, they have agreed to cooperate in an ongoing criminal investigation that has been referred to as the “largest public embezzlement scheme in state history.”
Via Mississippi Today:
“The Mississippi Department of Human Services is also suing Nancy New civilly, asking the court to make her repay $19.4 million. The department alleges New and 37 other defendants, including Favre, violated federal rules when they spent or received money from a federal block grant called Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
But Bryant, who had the statutory oversight responsibility over the department’s spending, has remained insulated from official liability. Mississippi Today, in its investigative series “The Backchannel,” first reported the former governor’s role in the scandal based on a trove of text messages between Bryant, Favre and other key defendants in the case.”
Per Mississippi Today, the state of Mississippi could have used that money to provide 2,600 low-income families with a year’s worth of rent, electricity, child care, diapers, monthly transportation stipends, and nine meals a day.
Favre’s alleged involvement is one of several examples alleged in the lawsuit of the funneling of TANF funds through MCEC for illegitimate purposes. Favre is not facing criminal charges in the scandal.