HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - This is a news release from the Mississippi Attorney General's Office.
A Harrison County woman has been arrested for allegedly defrauding the American Red Cross, announced Attorney General Jim Hood today.
Wanda Perkins, 43, of Gulfport, was arrested Monday night at her home in Harrison County by investigators with the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division. Perkins is charged with one count false pretense, one count mail and wire fraud, and one count credit card fraud. Perkins was a volunteer with the American Red Cross and allegedly created false claims of fires that destroyed homes in order to receive money from the charity. She is accused of receiving approximately $20,000 in the alleged con .
"We hope people will continue to give to the American Red Cross as members of their local organization brought the matter to our attention and have been most cooperative with our investigation," said Attorney General Jim Hood.
"We are aware of the arrest of a former volunteer of the Mississippi region of the American Red Cross," said Marilynn Grossman, Regional Communications/Marketing Manager for the American Red Cross. " The initial information in this matter was developed through a routine review of our disaster services operations. That information was turned over to the Mississippi Attorney General's office who began an investigation into the matter. The Red Cross will cooperate fully with the investigation."
Perkins was booked into the Harrison County Detention Center. If convicted, she faces up to 18 years behind bars. As with all cases the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The case is being investigated by Miller Faulk and Bo Luckey and will be prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Shaun Yurtkuran of the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division.