14th guilty plea entered in Feeding Our Future scandal

The latest is Defendant No. 24 (of 60) in the case, Sahra Nur. She was the second person indicted under the S&S Catering group, and ran the nonprofit Academy for Youth Excellence.

The lead defendant in the group, Qamar Hassan, filed guilty plea No. 11 last month. Nur entered a guilty plea on two counts in Federal court in Minneapolis this morning. Sahan Journal was there.

Nur’s nonprofit was located in Hassan’s S&S Catering building (since forfeited and sold) on Lake Street in Minneapolis. Academy for Youth Excellence was founded by Nur in November 2020. The other two principals of Academy for Youth Excellence have pleaded not guilty.

In the original indictment, Nur and her business partners in the Academy were said to have taken $4.3 million out of the free-food programs through her nonprofit. Academy was registered at Nur’s home in St. Anthony, which was “Subject Premises 5” in the January 2022 search warrant in the case.

The indictment mentions $333,000 having been seized from bank accounts associated with Nur’s operation. It also mentions cash, purses, and handbags being seized from Nur’s St. Anthony home (p. 33). The indictment (p. 25) mentions Nur personally receiving a $90,000 payment in the scheme.

Nur’s plea agreement filed today mentions much larger total dollar amounts, including $6.8 million (p. 2), $10 million and $16.5 million (p. 3). Sahan Journal reports that in court today, Nur mentioned working with a second free-food sponsor, known to be Partners in Nutrition (d/b/a Partners in Quality Care), in additional to her work with Feeding Our Future. Sahan Journal reports that Partners’ 7th Street St. Paul offices are now permanently closed.

Nur’s plea agreement includes a total dollar amount to be forfeited of more than $5 million (p. 14). The plea agreement also includes a more detailed inventory of the property seized from her home, including the name brands of the handbags (Louis Vuitton, Prada, a counterfeit Gucci) and a list of jewelry (pp. 13-14).

Sahan Journal reports that the sentencing guidelines for the two counts carry prison terms ranging from a total of 41 to 51 months.

Next week marks the first anniversary of the first batch of indictments in the case. Those defendants pleading not guilty are scheduled to go to trial on various dates throughout 2024. Thirty-five defendants have pleaded not guilty. One defendant died after being indicted but before she went to trial.