In an indictment unsealed early Wednesday, federal prosecutors accuse Pugh of defrauding local businesses and nonprofit organizations with nearly $800,000 in sales of her “Healthy Holly” children’s books to enrich herself, promote her political career, and illegally fund her campaign for mayor.
At Thursday’s hearing, Pugh could enter a plea. Two other people charged in the “Healthy Holly” scandal — Roslyn Wedington and Gary Brown Jr. — already have agreed to plead guilty in federal court. Hearings for Wedington and Brown had not been scheduled as of Wednesday.
The 11 charges against Pugh carry a sentence of as much as 175 years in prison. Prosecutors, however, routinely agree to a reduced prison term if criminal defendants cooperate and plead guilty.
The most serious charges against Pugh amount to felony crimes. Pugh’s attorney, Steve Silverman, declined to comment on the charges Wednesday morning, saying “he will address this matter in open court tomorrow."