“Millionaire” Couple Accused of Welfare Fraud

By NBC South Florida
|  Saturday, Mar 29, 2014  |  Updated 10:29 AM CDT
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A couple is facing felony charges for alleged welfare fraud while living on a luxury yacht in Florida.

A couple is facing felony charges for alleged welfare fraud while living on a luxury yacht in Florida.

A couple is on the run and  facing felony charges for alleged welfare fraud while living on a luxury yacht in Florida.

Colin Chisholm III, 62 and Andrea Chisholm, 53, were charged with milking public assistance programs, mainly in their home state of Minnesota, for more than $165,000 between January 2005 and March 2012 in that state alone.

The prosecutor in Minnesota that was looking for them isn’t amused.

“Mr. Chisholm is a conman of the first order, he created all sorts of false companies, claimed he was a Scottish heir and Lady Chisholm participated in these frauds,” said Mike Freeman, Hennepin County Attorney.

The criminal case against Chisholm details a lavish lifestyle. Records show they had three million dollars in various bank accounts during that period.

They are also accused of receiving welfare benefits from Florida as well.

The couple lived in a house in Lighthouse Point while they lived in the sunshine state. It has since been demolished but they paid several thousand dollars a month while living there.

They made a few payments on the yacht they bought while in Florida for $1.2 million, but it was repossessed by the Coast Guard.

With no criminal history, people convicted of fraud are typically sentenced to probation but Attorney Mike Freeman hopes this case will be different.

“We will not allow that to happen…I want them to do time, this is abdominal and offensive,” he said.

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