Former Philadelphia City Court Clerk Karen Refre after being indicted for embezzlement, State Auditor Shad White announced today.

A demand letter worth $25,746.59 was issued to Refre at the time of her surrender. The demand amount includes investigative costs and accrued interest.

Refre allegedly embezzled funds from the Philadelphia Municipal Court by taking cash collected by her office. She purportedly manipulated accounting software records by altering cash and check receipts to hide the embezzlement. Investigators determined Refre’s scheme lasted at least two years. When city officials noticed financial inconsistencies, they contacted the Auditor’s office.

Refre surrendered to Special Agents at the Neshoba County Law Enforcement Center. Her bail was set at $25,000 and was not immediately posted.

She will face up to 10 years in prison and $25,000 in fines if convicted. All persons arrested by the Mississippi Office of the State Auditor are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Refre’s prosecution will be handled by the office of District Attorney for the 8th District Stephen S. Kilgore.

A $50,000 surety bond covered her employment. A surety bond is similar to insurance designed to protect taxpayers from embezzlement and corruption. Refre will remain fully liable for the money missing from their respective communities in addition to criminal proceedings.