Lawyers prepare for virtual school fraud trial

(WHNT) — New filings in the federal case involving two former northern Alabama school principals show the case is set to go to a jury in February. The case also involves four other defendants.

Former Limestone County Superintendent Tom Sisk pleaded guilty in the case and lawyers for former Athens City Superintendent Trey Holladay told a court this week he also plans to plead guilty.

Holladay’s wife, Deborah, is also charged in the case facing wire fraud charges, but her case’s status is unclear.

On Friday, court records only show her for a trial in February. There is no indication how her husband’s plea might affect the case against her.

Federal prosecutors allege the group of educators was involved in a scheme that falsely claimed that private school children, who attended schools in the Black Belt region, were enrolled full-time in city schools. of Athens and Limestone County via online courses.

School systems received public funds for the education of these students.

A pre-trial conference says Holladay and his wife, along with Rick Carter, a Holladay District educator, are scheduled to go on trial Feb. 7.

Trey Holladay still faces 88 counts of wire fraud and 34 counts of aggravated impersonation.

Prosecutors allege the virtual scheme diverted $5.8 million to the former Holladay School District.

Perry A. Thomasson