Sheriff’s Department seeks possible fraud victims

Published 10:42 pm Saturday, April 26, 2008

Investigators with the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department are looking for possible victims in an alleged benefit scam.

Apparently on April 11, a 33-year-old man was selling raffle tickets for a .22-caliber, bolt action rifle, said Chief Investigator Shane Tucker. A model for the rifle is not listed on the raffle tickets. The tickets state the profits will raise funds to help a Lindsey Buras who is in need of medical treatment for heart problems. The name was listed on the tickets.

“We have a whole stack of tickets from the VFW,” Tucker said.

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Tucker said he is not sure of the man’s culpability in the case other than that he was selling the tickets.

Sheri Rena Buras, 28, who is the mother of the child, apparently signed a contract with the VFW on April 14, to hold a turkey shoot benefit to raise funds for heart problems from which she said her child suffered. However, when the VFW requested medical records reflecting her claim, she never returned with them, Tucker said. She later admitted when asked by investigators that her child does not have heart problems, Tucker said.

Apparently, the man who was selling the tickets also told someone that he works for the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department, and he does not, Tucker said. Buras had a last known address of 1501 Sixth Ave.

Investigators with the sheriff’s department request that anyone who may have made a donation for the child’s alleged medical problems, either at local businesses or by purchasing raffle tickets, call 601-403-2530 and talk to an investigator or leave a message. Information provided to the department on this matter will assist them in protecting the public and pressing charges, Tucker said.

At press time, no charges had been filed against either Buras or the man, Tucker said.