Former Columbus chief financial officer arrested for embezzlement

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – State Auditor Shad White announced special agents from his office arrested former City of Columbus Chief Financial Officer Milton Rawle, Jr., after he was indicted for embezzlement by a grand jury. When he was arrested, Rawle was issued a demand showing he owes $354,896.27 to taxpayers in Columbus.

Rawle is accused of embezzling nearly $290,000 by making electronic money transfers to personal bank accounts from December 2016 to December 2018. According to White, Rawle purportedly used official-sounding labels like “payroll” and “reimbursement” to hide unauthorized transactions.

Investigators also believe he used clipart to alter city bank statements to conceal the transfers. The case was investigated after accounting discrepancies were found and reported by a private CPA hired by the City of Columbus to complete a routine, annual audit.

“Mr. Rawle stole a great deal from the taxpayers of Columbus,” said White. “I’m thankful for the hard work of the auditor’s office investigators for building this case against him. Now it’s time for prosecutors to send him to prison and get the money back.”

Rawle was arrested by Special Agents on Monday in Jackson County. He was transported to the Lowndes County Jail where bond will be set by the court. If convicted, Rawle faces up to 20 years in prison and $25,000 in fines.

“Prosecutors should not go lightly here just because Mr. Rawle is a non-violent offender,” White said. “Mr. Rawle stole much more than many burglars could ever get away with. We shouldn’t treat him differently just because he wore a tie and stole with a pen.”

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