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Man Pleads Guilty To Defrauding FEMA Grants

A Dunsmuir man accused of ripping off a lot of FEMA money has decided to plead guilty. The U.S. Attorney’s Office says that between June of 2013 and March of last year, 40-year-old Samuel Thomas Lanier submitted false reimbursement requests to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to tap grant money awarded to Siskiyou and Shasta County Fire Chiefs Associations that was intended for recruiting and training new firefighters. The grants of One Million Dollars each were awarded in 2013 and 2014 to assure that communities have adequate fire protection by maintaining 24 hour staffing. Lanier ran two companies in Dunsmuir hired by the Fire Chiefs Associations to administer the grants. Investigators found that Lanier submitted reimbursement requests for goods and services totaling more than a Half Million Dollars that were never delivered. Lanier was charged Wednesday with 7 counts of major fraud against the federal government. After agreeing to plead guilty he could face up to 10 years in federal prison and a $10 Million fine.