New Mexico

Charter school founder sentenced to 5 years for fraud

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) - After more than five hours in court Friday morning, a judge has sentenced the founder of Southwest Learning Centers to five years in prison. 

Members of the Southwest Learning Center were happy to hear the judge's sentence Friday.

The president of one of the schools tells News 13 he still does not believe five years is enough for all the damage Scott Glasrud has done.

"After 14 years of doing this, I don't know if he knows another way of life. Personally, I don't feel that he's learned a lesson at all," says Larry Kennedy, President of SAMS Academy. 

Glasrud pled guilty to stealing millions of dollars from the school and state to feed his lavish lifestyle.

He used the money to buy expensive cars like a Maserati, boats and a $10,000 square-foot home.

Last year, he took a plea deal on charges of theft, fraud and lying to investigators that would put him behind bars for four to five years.

During his sentencing Friday morning, no cameras were allowed inside the courtroom, but Glasrud gave a tearful testimony saying he was sorry for what he has done and has no excuse for his behavior, except that he was greedy. 

Larry Kennedy, the president of SAMS Academy, says he did not buy Glasrud's act.

"I felt he was putting on a show. He put on a show for the schools for 14 years. He's very good at it. I really feel that's what he did," says Kennedy.  

Judge James Parker sentenced Glasrud to 5 years in federal prison. That includes 3 years probation.

Glasrud is also responsible for $3 million in restitution that will be divided evenly between all the schools and the PED. 

After the hearing, News 13 asked Glasrud's attorneys for comment on the sentencing and they refused to give an interview or comment.

Scott Glasrud will serve his five-year term at a federal prison in Yankton, South Dakota. 


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