Former apartment subleaser maintains his innocence in fraud accusations

MEMPHIS, Tenn.-- The man accused of cheating charities and a Memphis apartment complex is no longer in charge of subleasing units to families.

Carlton Johnson signed over 29 units at the University Gardens Manor apartments he was responsible for on Wednesday.  Families initially received eviction notices after the complex said they weren't getting the money they were due.

Johnson's bizarre case is something WREG has been telling you about all month.

Basically he's accused of preying on vulnerable people and not properly handling funds from charities, like MIFA, that are supposed to go to the apartment complex.

On Wednesday morning, while waiting in the hallway of chancery court, Johnson did not want to speak to us at first, but eventually he started talking.

When he did, he had a lot to say.

He said he couldn't pay for his units at University Gardens because the people he was leasing to, who he often connected by dropping the name “MIFA," stopped paying him.

"They stopped paying, when I had already spread it saying, 'Hey will you take this off of this one and put it back to the right one. No it will even out, it will even out.' Yes, it would if they would've been paying. I really tried to help them, but when 11 people just all of a sudden don't pay, yes it implodes a company. Yes, it implodes, but it was no fault of mine," said Johnson.

That company he's talking about is TAG Services that he ran out of a unit of the complex he was subleasing from.

Johnson initially told us weeks ago he didn't have money to pay the leases, because his money was essentially stolen by someone working for him.

We asked what happened to that claim.

"That was given back and guess who I gave it back to? Them! " he said.

Referring to "them" he was talking about the complex.

However representing himself Wednesday, Johnson signed the properties he was subleasing back to the midtown apartment complex.

"I did not take anything illegally! It went to just, OK, when you try and pay one person's rent and then you shift it over here to try and make sure you balance what they're not paying the money is there but it may not have been applied to the right person," Johnson explained to WREG.

However an attorney representing the apartment complex said there is money unaccounted for.

"From MIFA's record I couldn't speak to those I know that my client is out around $50,000 I know that the Post Master General is now involved, I know that the Inspector General is involved whenever federal funds go missing people become very concerned at a federal level," explained attorney Derek Whitlock.

No people who were subleasing from Johnson were evicted in this case. They've been given the opportunity to rent directly from the complex.

Johnson claims he no longer is going to sublease units at complexes.