Those "give a penny to help the homeless" sidewalk tables that everybody suspected were just a scam are in fact a scam, a judge recently ruled. After granting a preliminary injunction against the United Homeless Organization last December, Supreme Court Justice Barbara Kapnick has shut it down forever [pdf].

An investigation by Attorney General Andrew Cuomo (and our main man Arnold "SHAME!" Diaz) found that the tables were manned by individuals (many of them homeless or on the margins) who paid a flat-rate $15 to $25 to rent the table and empty water jug for a four-hour shift. Donations were supposed to go to homeless charities and soup kitchens, but instead went into the table workers' pockets, and up to the UHO founders, who personally pocketed up to $100,000 a year.

But now another group is quickly filling the void. Crews led by a UHO alumn have been collecting money for the for-profit Street Talk News. According to the Post, they wear "official-looking aprons and solicit spare change in plastic containers." Fire up the Shame Mobile, Diaz!