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Utah Accused In Lawsuit Of Misusing US Grant Funds

The U.S. government is alleging in a lawsuit that Utah criminal justice officials misused grant funds to bolster state coffers rather than to hire new employees. The U.S. Attorney’s Office filed a lawsuit Friday in a case that began when a prison inmate stumbled upon documents that showed the federal grant money was being used to pay prison guards. The alleged misuse of the funds occurred from June 2009 through May 2013. Richard Piatt, a spokesman for the Utah Attorney General’s Office, said the state plans to carry-out a “vigorous defense” of the nearly 20 public officials named in the lawsuit.