Carolyn Towns, 51, oversaw a team of grave diggers that would exhume bodies, crush vaults and dump human remains in the trash.
Cops said they would also "double stack" graves, burying existing remains deeper into the ground a putting newer one's in the same location at Chicago's Burr Oak Cemetery.
At the time, Sheriff Thomas J. Dart called the scene "disturbing."
He said: "I found bones out there," he said. "I found individuals wandering aimlessly looking for their loved ones who can't find them."
The investigation also extended into "Babyland," a section of the cemetery intended for children, where Dart added that he talked to countless women who could not find their children.
At one point it was thought that the grave of Michelle Obama's late Father Fraser Robinson III may have been affected, but it was later found to be a mistake.
What wasn't in doubt however, was Towns pocketed donations she elicited for an Emmett Till Memorial museum
Till was just 14 when murdered in 1955 for reportedly whistling a white woman and his case had become a touchstone for the civil right movement.
Authorities also discovered his original glass-faced casket was piled in a garage filled with lawn care equipment.
So appalled was the community by their actions that even The Rev, Jesse Jackson was moved to comment, telling NBC Chicago there's "a special place in hell" for those accused of digging up graves.
Three grave diggers also face charges.