Saudia Shuler, the North Philly mom and chef who got viral media attention for the extravagant high school graduation party she threw her son back in 2017, which famously featured a camel and was said to cost $25,000.
But federal prosecutors have now indicted Shuler, 44, with Social Security fraud and theft of government funds, for allegedly collecting $36,785.67 in benefits for being “disabled” – even as she continued to work and operate her catering business.
Saudia Shuler didn’t appear to be fazed by the charges. “Let’s get ready to rumble,” she wrote in an Instagram post, noting that she hired prominent local defense attorney Tariq El-Shabazz, who made an unsuccessful run for nomination as Philly district attorney in 2017. “I got the best lawyer in the business.”
“Did they all say 140 years?” she added. “If y’all wanna help me, repost my gravy and make the world wanna taste it. My attorney will handle the rest.”
Saudia Shuler faces 140 years
Shuler was also known for organizing a Black Panther-themed prom sendoff and a North Pole Christmas party near her restaurant. But the feds said she was illegally collecting disability benefits during that time.
“The defendant applied for benefits from the Social Security Administration, claiming she was disabled and unable to work,” said the office of William McSwain, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, in a press release. “After Social Security approved the benefits, the defendant allegedly continued working, including operating her own restaurant. This work and income were never reported to Social Security, in violation of program rules.”
If convicted, Saudia Shuler will face a full restitution order to repay all $36,785.67, and a maximum prison sentence of up to 140 years, the feds said.