Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr announced this week that Clarence Dean Alford, a former member of the Board of Regents, has pleaded guilty to racketeering.
Alford pleaded guilty before Chief Superior Court Judge Robert F. Mumford.
This, according to an emailed press release.
“Alford is alleged to have exploited a common industry practice referred to in the financial services sector as ‘factoring.’ Factoring is a financial transaction in which a business may sell its accounts receivable to a third party at a discount. The goal of Alford’s scheme was to obtain approximately $1.7 million by selling fake accounts receivable invoices valued at approximately $2.2 million,” according to the press release.
“As part of his scheme, Alford created fake invoices, contracts, and other documents to show that his company was owed money from state agencies. He also forged the signatures of state employees on those contracts and other documents. Alford was, at the time, a member of the State Board of Regents, and he used that position to further his fraud schemes.”
Alford resigned from the Board of Regents in October 2019, the press release said.
Mumford sentenced Alford to 15 years. Alford will serve eight years in prison and then spend the remainder on probation. As a condition of his probation, Alford may not conduct any business with the state, the press release said.
Regents govern the University System of Georgia without financial remuneration. The governor appoints members of the Board of Regents to a seven-year term. A sitting governor may reappoint regents to subsequent terms, according to the University System of Georgia’s website.
The Board of Regents has 19 members, five of whom are appointed from the state-at-large and one from each of the state’s 14 congressional districts. Board members elect a chancellor who serves as chief executive officer and the chief administrative officer of the University System. Board members also oversee the Georgia Archives and the Georgia Public Library Service, according to the University System of Georgia’s website.
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