Man charged in Feeding Our Future scheme failed to show at hearing, warrant issued

A warrant has been issued for one of the defendants charged in the Feeding Our Future case after he failed to show up for a hearing on April 13, according to documents filed in federal court.

Sade Osman Hashi, 34, of Minneapolis, was due in court at 1:30 p.m. last Thursday but never showed. Federal documents show a warrant was issued for Hashi, who is facing charges related to wire fraud, money laundering, and federal programs bribery.

At least 60 people have been charged in the Feeding Our Future fraud scheme that the U.S. Attorney’s Office says is the “largest pandemic relief fraud scheme charged to date.” The alleged fraud scheme used the Federal Child Nutrition Program to get funds that were supposed to go toward feeding children in Minnesota, according to an indictment for Hashi.

RELATED: Feds: Nonprofit stole millions of tax dollars meant to feed kids during pandemic

The indictment alleges that from September 2020 to 2022, Hashi knowingly defrauded the government by getting money under false pretenses while claiming he was feeding children.

Hashi’s indictment said employees at Feeding Our Future operated a pay-to-play scheme, in which employees solicited and received bribes and kickbacks from people under the sponsorship of Feeding Our Future. Many of the kickbacks were paid under the guise of “consulting fees” to shell companies created by Feeding Our Future employees.

Hashi became the chief executive officer (CEO) of Great Lakes Inc. in 2019. The indictment said Hashi used the Great Lakes Inc. name to operate several Federal Child Nutrition Programs in Minneapolis.

In addition to this, Great Lakes Inc. did business as “Safari Express,” a name that was registered with the State of Minnesota in 2009 and reinstated in 2021. The indictment alleges Hashi used Safari Express to act as a vendor in the Federal Child Nutrition Program for other sites under the sponsorship of Feeding Our Future.

Altogether, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Feeding Our Future opened more than 250 sites across the state and obtained more than $240 million in federal funding, much of which was used to buy luxury vehicles, property or travel.

RELATED: Prosecutors charge 10 more in Feeding Our Future fraud case