Man connected with private Charlotte school charged with defrauding student-athletes

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A North Carolina man is accused of defrauding eight student athletes of more than $28,000 and falsely promising to deliver college basketball scholarships.

Aris Lamont Hines faces eight felony counts of "obtaining property by false pretenses" and remains behind bars on a $2 million bond.

Channel 9 obtained the indictments issued by a grand jury in Robeson County in December. He was arrested in Alamance County.

"Mr. Hines was taken into custody and turned over to the Robeson County officials and he was then transferred back to Robeson County," Deputy Randy Jones, with the Alamance County Sheriff's Office, said.

The charges stem from a human trafficking investigation first reported by Eyewitness News in June.

Hines is accused of luring dozens of student-athletes to North Carolina from other countries and exploiting them for his own financial gain.

A private school in southeast Charlotte is connected with the case.

The Evelyn Mack Academy on Monroe Road sponsored several foreign student athletes on behalf of Aris Hines.

School founder Evelyn Mack denies taking part in a human trafficking operation.

Investigative reporter Paul Boyd visited Evelyn Mack Academy Wednesday morning, but the school was locked and the lights were off. There was no sign of students or faculty anywhere.

However, Evelyn Mack said her school is open for business.

But when asked to clarify the lack of activity at her school, she declined to comment.

The Evelyn Mack Academy website was recently changed. There are no longer any references to student-athletes on the site.

A source told Channel 9 Wednesday that the school's basketball program disbanded in the wake of the human trafficking investigation last year.

Channel 9 checked the Homeland Security database for the "Student and Exchange Visitor Program" and found that Evelyn Mack Academy remains qualified to apply for and receive student visas.


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