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Brett Favre is one of 38 defendants in a lawsuit brought by the Mississippi Department of Human Services alleging a serious misappropriation of welfare funds. The retired Hall of Fame quarterback is requesting to be dismissed from the lawsuit along with his Favre Enterprises business entity.
ESPN reported that Brett Favre, 53, filed a motion on Monday (Nov. 28) asking a Mississippi judicial court to dismiss the lawsuit. According to the outlet, a portion of the motion read, “It is apparent that MDHS has sued Favre, a Mississippi and national celebrity, in an effort to deflect responsibility for its own egregious wrongdoing.”
The issue has dogged Favre for months after auditors in Mississippi found that a portion of the $77 million in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funds originally slated to support nonprofits and assist the state’s poor were misdirected to the coffers of wealthy residents. The lawsuit was first announced on May 9 and is a civil matter. So far, six individuals have been arrested in connection to the case with five of them pleading guilty. Favre was among the named individuals in the lawsuit but does not face any legal charges.
“[MDHS]’s lawsuit is nothing more than a baseless attempt to blame Brett Favre for its own failure to oversee the welfare funds placed in its trust,” Favre’s lawyer, Eric Herschmann, said in a statement to ESPN. “Mr. Favre never had any control over how Mississippi spent its welfare funds. He never made any misrepresentations to anyone.”
As reported by the Associated Press, Favre has paid back $1.1 million in speaking fees that he received from the TANF-funded Mississippi Community Education Center. However, a state auditor found that Favre still owes $228,000 in back interest.
On Twitter, some examined the lack of chatter around the explosive case over the past few days, including the motion filed by Brett Favre. Those reactions can be viewed below.