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Ex-housing authority director, 4 others indicted in alleged fraud scheme

The South Bend Housing Authority provides housing opportunities to the South Bend community and manages more than 800 public housing units.
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — The former executive director of a northern Indiana city's housing authority has been indicted along with four others in a scheme that allegedly defrauded the U.S. government of millions of dollars. 

Between 2014 and 2019, Tonya Robinson was the executive director of the South Bend Housing Authority (HASB). 

The HASB had an annual contract with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development from which it receives several hundred thousand dollars annually in assistance from the federal government. As executive director, Robinson was the primary person responsible for the overall day-to-day operations of the HASB.

Two other defendants in the case, Albert Smith and Tyreisha Robinson, are former employees at the HASB, and the last two defendants, Archie Robinson and Ronald Taylor, are owners of contracting businesses hired by the HASB to do contracting work.  

Federal prosecutors announced Tuesday that Robinson and the others are accused of creating fraudulent housing authority payment checks for contracting work that was not actually done. The contractors then cashed those checks and kicked back a portion to the five defendants. 

All five defendants are charged with conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud, bank fraud and wire fraud.