Former Obama White House advisor Arrested in NYC, charged with at least three crimes


Here's a guy who served as an education advisor for the Barack Obama White House. His name is Seth Andrew and he was arrested this week and accused of stealing at least $218,005 from a charter school network he founder, says numerous reports.

His arrest took place in NYC where his home is worth over $2 million.

He's married to Lana Zak, a news anchor for CBS News, and she's probably not very happy with all this going on.


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CNBC came through with all the details, reporting the following:

The founder of Democracy Prep Public Schools is accused of using more than half of the allegedly stolen money from that network to maintain a bank account minimum that gave him a more favorable interest rate for a mortgage on his and Zak’s Manhattan residence. Zak was not charged in the case.

Prosecutors said Andrew in 2019 — more than two years after severing ties with Democracy Prep — looted a series of escrow accounts he had previously set up for individual schools within Democracy Prep’s network, and then used their funds to open a business account in the name of one of the schools at a bank.


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A surveillance photo from a bank, which was included in a criminal complaint, show Andrew at that bank, where he was closing one of the schools’ escrow account there in October 2019.

Andrew is seen in that photo wearing a yellow hat, which an FBI agent noted in the complaint “is essentially Andrew’s ‘calling card,’” as it signifies a connection to Democracy Prep “and his leadership of it.”

He is charged with wire fraud, money laundering and making false statements to a financial institution, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, which is prosecuting the case. The charges carry a maximum possible prison term of 30 years, but Andrew is almost certain to get far less time than that if convicted, given federal sentencing guidelines.

U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss in a statement said, “Seth Andrew abused his position as a founder of a charter school network to steal from the very same schools he helped create.”

“Andrew is not only alleged to have stolen the schools’ money but also to have used the stolen funds to obtain a savings on a mortgage for a multimillion-dollar Manhattan apartment,” Strauss said.

At an appearance later Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, a judge ordered Andrew released on a $500,000 personal recognizance bond, which will have three co-signers.

As a condition of that bond, both Andrew and Zak must surrender their passports, and Andrew’s travel was restricted to New York City, several counties north of the city, Long Island, and Vermont.

Andrew next is due in court on May 27.

Zak, who has three children with Andrew, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Andrew’s criminal defense attorney, Michael Yaeger, told CNBC that Andrew “will be entering a plea of not guilty” in the case. He declined to comment further.

WOW!!! The school network sent an email to parents telling them that anything Seth Andrew might have done had basically no impact on the school functionality or in general.

You see this a lot with charter schools, at least in my city. Someone's always up to something while they're milking money from the public school system.

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