Chief of St. Paul’s Fire District and Two Others Charged in Fraud and Kickback Scheme
Contact Person: Nancy Wicker (803) 929-3000
Columbia, South Carolina---- Acting United States Attorney Beth Drake today announced that a Charleston Grand Jury has returned a two-count indictment charging St. Paul’s Fire District Chief Doc McNeil Matthews, age 47, of Hollywood; Assistant Chief Charles Riddle, age 44, of Goose Creek; and Mary Jo Thomas-Delaney, age 67, of Summerville, with fraud and embezzlement from a federally funded organization. Count 1 of the Indictment alleges that Chief Matthews embezzled money from the District by, among other things, inflating his leave balances and cashing in the leave. In Count 2, the indictment alleges that Matthews, Riddle and Thomas-Delaney participated in a scheme to secretly inflate contract payments from the District to Thomas-Delaney’s company, Grant Services LLC, and then split the inflated proceeds with each other. Each count carries a maximum prison term of ten years, and a fine of up to $250,000.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division. The investigation was initiated at the request of the St. Paul’s Fire District Commission after audits disclosed financial irregularities.
Assistant United States Attorney Eric Klumb is prosecuting the case.
The Acting United States Attorney stated that the charges alleged in the Indictment are merely accusations and that all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.