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Former PHA Official Charged In Fraud Scheme

By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - A former Philadelphia Housing Authority manager allegedly cheated the low-income housing agency for years. He's been charged with fraud and conspiracy.

Federal authorities allege 40-year-old Richard Perri, materials coordinator for PHA maintenance, bought over $400,000 worth of materials with PHA funds and then sold them to others for non-PHA projects.

"We're talking about building materials; lumber, sheetrock. Also there were some appliances, but primarily building materials," says prosecutor K. T. Newton.

According to authorities, Perri and another person, identified only as co-conspirator # 1, sold the materials for half price and then split the profit.

Perri, in a position of trust, allegedly carried out the scheme, in part, by submitting fraudulent requisitions to PHA. Perri was fired in 2008.

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