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FBI Questions Brett Favre After Mississippi Paid Him $1.1 Million From Welfare Funds For Speeches He Never Gave

FBI Questions Brett Favre After Mississippi Paid Him $1.1 Million From Welfare Funds For Speeches He Never Gave
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Football quarterback Brett Favre—best known for his more than 20-season career playing for the Green Bay Packers—was questioned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) after an audit in Favre's home state of Mississippi alleged that state's Department of Human Services misspent $94 million intended for at-need residents, including $1.1 million paid out to Favre's company for two speaking appearances he did not make.

The Mississippi state auditor's office found that federal grant funds diverted from Mississippi's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families welfare funds (TANF), as well as tens of millions in public funds as an element of the scheme. Favre has repaid the fees, but not $228,000 in interest the auditor also demanded.

Favre has not been accused of a crime or charged and has declined to speak with reporters. His attorney has said that he did nothing wrong and that he did not know he was paid with money intended to help poor children.

The scandal first gained attention in 2020, after Favre's involvement with the development and promotion of a concussion treatment drug, Prevasol, by the Prevacus corporation, came under scrutiny.

The nonprofit Mississippi Community Education Center (MCEC) received $2.5 million in TANF funds and a grand jury in Hinds County indicted MCEC founder, Nancy New, and her son Zach in the scheme. New and her son have pleaded guilty to state and federal charges and are cooperating with authorities.

These latest developments have exposed Favre to heavy criticism.

Favre, a prominent Republican who endorsed former President Donald Trump in the 2020 general election, addressed the controversy last year, saying that Shad White, the state auditor, had decided to "continue to push out this lie that the money was for no-show events is something I cannot stay silent about."

White has rejected Favre's defense, saying that Favre is using his "megaphone as a celebrity to drown out the facts, but it will not change the facts.”