Local News

More Charges Filed in Durham Loan Scandal

Posted September 17, 2007 5:40 p.m. EDT

— A former director of a federal small-business loan charged in a 6-year-old fraud case was indicted Monday on more fraud charges.

Anita Bennett, of Dangerfield Drive in Raleigh, was indicted on 21 counts of obtaining property by false pretense.

Bennett had been contracted by Durham in 1999 to run the federal loan program, which was designed to encourage small businesses to open in low-income areas. She was fired from her job in 2001.

She was charged last year after authorities said she issued more than $800,000 in loans to nonexistent companies. Investigators said some of the money from the bogus loans was funneled back to her.

Her husband and sister also have been charged in the case. Kathy Marie Fenner, 43, of Sunshine Road in Burgaw, and James Leroy Bennett II, 42, of Dangerfield Drive in Raleigh, face the same charges as Anita Bennett.

A fourth defendant, Carlton Olander Clark, 43, of Centra Villa Drive in Atlanta, reached a plea deal with prosecutors and agreed to testify against the Bennetts and Fenner.