Stacy Cato Folds, 42, of Bowdon was arrested in October 2012 and released on a $15,000 property bond. She is accused of taking $35,000 from city funds while employed by the city of Bowdon.
She has been indicted on the charge of theft by taking and will be arraigned Tuesday in front of Judge John Simpson.
According to officials, the arrest is related to money missing from an account to process fines and court-levied fees, and early estimates placed the missing funds between $20,000 and $30,000.
In September, the city of Bowdon called the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to look into alleged misappropriations of city funds. It was the city’s second call to the GBI in three months.
Mayor Keith Crawford said the probe started Sept. 10, 2012, after Folds “notified city administration of misappropriated funds.”
“City administration immediately notified City Police Chief [Mark Brock] and on the same day, the case was turned over to Georgia Bureau of Investigation,” Crawford said in his released statement.
Joseph Nathanial Harden, 41, a former attorney, is accused of converting funds from a civil settlement in a case he handled to his personal and business expenses.
Harden, who voluntarily surrendered his State Bar of Georgia license last July, has been charged with prohibited activities (racketeering) and will be arraigned Tuesday in front of Judge Jack Kirby.
Harden is represented by Carrollton attorney Jason Swindle.
John Bankhead, director of the GBI’s public affairs office, said the GBI began the investigation in April at the request of District Attorney Pete Skandalakis.
“Agent Larry Duren investigated the case, and as a result he charged Harden with one count of theft by taking and one count of forgery,” Bankhead said. “What this deals with are allegations of his converting funds from a civil settlement in a case he handled to his personal and business expenses.”
Bankhead said the funds were paid to Harden on behalf of his clients and that the money was supposed to go to his clients. Bankhead said Harden is accused of forging his clients’ signatures and putting the money, estimated to be about $180,000, into his accounts.
Harden turned himself in at the Carroll County Jail in May after learning the GBI had warrants out for his arrest. At the time, he was charged with theft by taking and forgery.
A per curiam decision by the Georgia Supreme Court said Harden “admits that in connection with the representation of his married clients in a personal injury action, he received $180,000 on behalf of the clients and that, since that time, he has not delivered the funds to the clients or otherwise accounted for those funds.”
The state Supreme Court’s decision, on which all justices concurred, reads that Harden’s voluntary license surrender is “tantamount to disbarment,” and that he should be removed from the rolls of persons authorized to practice law in Georgia.