Former Mississippi mayor arrested on 3 counts of embezzlement

Published 4:30 pm Thursday, February 29, 2024

The former mayor of a Mississippi Delta town has been arrested on three counts of embezzlement.

Bertha Thomas, former mayor of Beulah, a town of fewer than 250 people in Bolivar County, is accused of embezzling tax disbursements issued to the town by the Bolivar County Tax Collector. She was served with a $12,573.42 demand letter at the time of her arrest.

“Big or small, we will continue to identify embezzlement of your taxpayer dollars and forward these cases to prosecutors for enforcement,” said State Auditor Shad White.

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Thomas faces up to 20 years in prison and $5,000 in fines per count if convicted. All persons arrested by the Mississippi Office of the State Auditor are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

A $10,000 surety bond covers Thomas’ employment as mayor. Surety bonds are similar to insurance designed to protect taxpayers from corruption. Thomas will remain liable for the full amount of the demand in addition to criminal proceedings.

Suspected fraud can be reported to the auditor’s office online at or by calling 1-800-321-1275.