Former Philadelphia Municipal Court Clerk Karen Refre has been convicted of embezzlement in Neshoba County Circuit Court, State Auditor Shad White announced.


Refre embezzled at least $26,000 from Philadelphia Municipal Court by taking cash collected by her office. Refre purportedly manipulated accounting software records by altering cash and check receipts to hide the embezzlement, White said at the time of her indictment last September.


The case was prosecuted by District Attorney Steven S. Kilgore in Judge Mark Duncan’s court chambers. The sentencing was recorded on Friday.


Refre was arrested by Special Agents from the State Auditor’s office in August 2019 after being indicted. She used her position to manipulate accounting software and embezzle over $11,000 from the city during a two-year period.


Duncan sentenced Refre to spend two years in prison and five years in a probation program under the supervision of the Department of Corrections. 


The Auditor’s Office has already recovered the entire amount of Refre’s demand letter by filing a claim against her surety bond, and she must also personally reimburse her surety bond company as part of the sentencing order.


“Another successful investigation concluded, another guilty plea,” said Auditor White. “I’m thankful for the work of our investigators and for the work of prosecutors, who obtained prison time as a part of this guilty plea. We will continue to forge partnerships around the state and work to bring cases to a successful conclusion, just as we have done here.”


Suspected fraud can be reported to the Auditor’s office online any time by clicking the red button at or via telephone during normal business hours at 1-(800)-321-1275.