Miss. mayor indicted on Katrina fraud charges - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Miss. mayor indicted on Katrina fraud charges

Warr and Vice President Dick Cheney in 2005 Warr and Vice President Dick Cheney in 2005

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - The mayor of a Mississippi city devastated by Hurricane Katrina pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges he lied to get disaster assistance to repair his damaged beachfront home.

Gulfport Mayor Brent Warr is the highest-ranking public official so far to be charged with fraud related to the storm that slammed the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29, 2005.

He and his wife, Laura, pleaded not guilty in federal court to charges in a 16-count indictment that was issued January 22nd but not made public until Wednesday.

Brent Warr would not discuss the matter when contacted today on his cell phone.

The mayor and his wife are accused of seeking a homeowners assistance grant for a storm-damaged beachfront home they owned but did not live in. The government is seeking forfeiture of $222,798. They also are accused of making false claims to their insurance company.

A tentative trial date of April 6th was set after a hearing today in Gulfport before a fedearl magistrate.                  

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)     

 

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