Delta Blues: WWE Legend Ted DiBiase Has to Repay Mississippi Millions

by Matthew Memrick
delta-blues-wwe-legend-ted-dibiase-has-repay-mississippi-millions

While former NFL quarterback Brett Favre leads the news over a Mississippi welfare fund scandal, WWE legend Ted DiBiase Sr. also owes money that should have gone to needy families.

According to The Mississippi Free Press, the World Wrestling Entertainment “Million Dollar Man” wrestler must pay $722,299 to the state over funds that his Christian ministry, Heart of David Ministries, received.

A February 2020 Sports Illustrated article reported that Heart of David Ministries initially owed $2,126,739 in federal funds through the Mississippi Department of Human Services since 2017. The money came from the federal government’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

Think that’s a lot? Check out his sons and the money they owe. 

Ted DiBiase Jr., who also got into the WWE ring, owes $3.9 million. Another son, Brett, has to pay back $225,950. Between the three men, they must pay around $4,848,249. And they better hurry. There’s some interest payment involved, too.

According to Celebrity Net Worth, the 67-year-old wrestler and Clinton resident is worth $1 million. The 2010 WWE Hall of Famer from 1974 to 1993.

In total, six people were indicted in the scandal and accused of embezzling $4.15 million in welfare funds.

DiBiase Sons Owes Big In Scandal

At one point, Brett DiBiase became a deputy administrator for the Mississippi Department of Health Services. During that time, Heart of David Ministries started getting payments. But the job lasted only nine months, and authorities arrested him on Feb. 5, 2020, as part of the scheme. The former wrestler pled guilty to charges in December. 

Even after Brett DiBiase left his post, his dad’s ministry continued getting payments.

In 2018, the Charleston Post and Courier reported that former WWE wrestler Ted DiBiase Jr. lived in Mississippi and was a vice president of business development for an insurance company. The former wrestler serves as a motivational speaker touring the state’s schools.

The website Wrestling View said DiBiase Jr. had started his non-profit charity in 2012. The Ted DiBiase Foundation worked with individuals who had life-threatening illnesses or disabilities. Those folks got a chance to meet the founder at live WWE events. The foundation also helped with youth leadership and community causes. DiBiase Jr. was also involved in his father’s Heart of David Ministries at some point.

According to Sports Illustrated, Brett DiBiase Jr. went to a luxury drug rehab facility in California on $48,000 of the funds. 

Favre’s Money Trouble

White said Favre accepted the money for speaking engagements he never attended for Families First For Mississippi, one of the non-profits involved in the alleged scheme. Reportedly, the football star has said he did not know the funds were illegal when he accepted them.

The website Sportskeeda estimated the Kiln, Miss. native’s worth at $100 million.

After news broke of the scandal, Favre reportedly paid some of the money back in May 2020. 

Outsider.com