Brett Favre, a Hall of Fame Quarterback, has filed three separate lawsuits for defamation against ESPN commentator Pat McAfee, Fox Sports commentator Shannon Sharpe and state Auditor shad White.
Welfare Fraud Scandal
Favre is in the middle of the largest welfare fraud scandal in the history of Mississippi state. The scandal first came to light in 2020. The office of the state auditor discovered that at least $77 million from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) fund. These funds that were intended to help the neediest families in the state. Instead, they lined the pockets of the rich and powerful.
Brett Favre vs. Shannon Sharpe and Pat McAfee
Favre’s lawsuit against Sharpe alleges that the Fox Sports commentator defamed him by saying on air that Favre was a “sorry mofo” for stealing from the lowest of the low and that he stole money from people who really needed it. The lawsuit against McAfee, filed by Favre, accuses the ESPN commentator of calling Favre a thief for stealing from poor people in Mississippi on his show, “The Pat McAfee Show,” and on Twitter.
‘Egregiously False’ Fraud Scandal Statements
Favre’s lawsuit against White accuses the auditor of falsely attacking his reputation to advance his political career. The lawsuit states that White made false and defamatory statements accusing Favre of stealing taxpayer funds and knowingly misusing funds meant to help the poor. However, a spokesman for the State Auditor’s office, Fletcher Freeman, stated that everything White has said about the case is true and backed by years of audit work by the office.
Payments from TANF Funds
A state audit and civil lawsuit named Brett Favre as one of several defendants. He also revealed that Favre was paid $1.1 million from TANF funds for speeches he never made. Although Favre repaid the money, the state auditor demanded he pay an additional $228,000 in interest. The athletic foundation at Favre’s alma mater, the University of Southern Mississippi, also received $5 million from TANF funds. Text messages revealed that Favre pushed for funding for a new volleyball facility on campus during the time his daughter was on the team.
Favre’s “Charitable Giving”
Favre’s lawsuits highlight the numerous charities that have benefited from his Favre 4 Hope foundation, which supports disadvantaged and disabled children and breast cancer patients. Although Favre has supported causes such as Southern Mississippi, tax records reveal that his alma mater was the major recipient of his charitable giving. The company Prevacus, in which Favre was the top outside investor, also received TANF funds, according to the state audit.
Favre’s spokesperson declined to comment on the lawsuits.
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