The Chicago Inspector General's office has taken over a city investigation into allegations of financial mismanagement and forged records at the city's Minority Outreach Intervention Project, the Chicago Free Press reports. The investigation, previously headed by the Chicago Department of Public Health, is looking into allegations that MOIP misspent money intended for HIV/AIDS outreach programs for Latino Chicago residents and that MOIP executive director Brandon Armani forged attendance records at unattended Latino-oriented events to justify receiving the grant money.
The investigation was spurred by former MOIP employee Richard Santana. Several other former MOIP employees told the Free Press they can confirm Santana's allegations. Armani has denied the charges. The shift of the investigation to the Inspector General's office could open the door for criminal charges if the review uncovers any wrongdoing. The city also could order MOIP to return $80,000 in grant money the agency received from the health department for HIV/AIDS outreach in Latino communities.