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Two defendants to be arraigned in surplus property case

BASSFIELD — State Auditor Stacey Pickering says two individuals turned themselves in to the Rankin County Sheriff’s Office last Tuesday following multiple count indictments.

These indictments are a result of the investigation into surplus property purchased by the City of Bassfield and converted to personal use.

Brenda Saulters and Billy Matthews were booked on the charges false pretenses, embezzlement and conspiracy to commit false pretenses.

Saulters and Matthews will be arraigned tomorrow at the Rankin County Circuit Court.

In October 2012, State Auditor’s Office announced the return of 22 pieces of property and equipment improperly obtained by the City of Bassfield back to the State of Mississippi. An investigation earlier this year determined the items were purchased by the city but were intended and later converted to personal use. Items included multiple boats, travel trailers and heavy equipment. Property is valued at $309,228. The City of Bassfield purchased the property and equipment at government discounts for a total of $52,840.

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