School district vendor gets 5 years in prison in fraud case

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Photo via FOX 2 in Detroit

DETROIT (AP) — A 74-year-old businessman who sold supplies to the Detroit school district has been sentenced to five years in prison in a bribery and kickback scheme involving a dozen principals and one administrator.

U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts said Tuesday that Norman Shy’s sentence should stand as a deterrent for others tempted to steal from the district.

Investigators say the district was cheated out of $2.7 million. Bogus invoices were submitted for chairs, paper and other supplies, some of which were never delivered. In return, gift cards, cash and checks were given to school employees. The government says Shy paid about $900,000 in kickbacks.

Shy told Roberts that he made “a horrible mistake.”

All but one of the principals has pleaded guilty. Former administrator Clara Flowers also faces sentencing Tuesday.

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