Goliad County official plans forensic analysis of city bank accounts

Melissa Crowe By Melissa Crowe

March 6, 2014 at 8 p.m.
Updated March 6, 2014 at 9:07 p.m.

Before the Texas Rangers close their investigation into Goliad's economic development program, District Attorney Michael Sheppard said his office needs a complete forensic analysis of the banking records.

Sheppard said the Goliad city secretary notified him Thursday that the Rangers closed their case. However, he said he has not received a final report from the Rangers and there is more work to do.

"Because of the statements made about a missing million dollars, someone needs to follow the money trail and make sure the money in and the money out is all accounted for appropriately," Sheppard said. "My hope is it will properly be accounted for."

A call to the Texas Rangers was not returned Thursday.

The Goliad Municipal Development District is under state scrutiny after an Advocate investigation revealed poor record keeping, questionable loan practices, missing documents and virtually no accountability.

In reaction to the Advocate's investigation, the city ceased lending and hired an outside attorney and a financial consultant to clean up the economic development program.

"It's my impression that the Rangers, for whatever reason, believe they have not uncovered any criminal wrongdoing," Sheppard said.

His office has contracted with a former FBI agent to conduct a forensic evaluation of the district's bank accounts.

Sheppard said he wants to look under every stone.

"I have great faith in the Rangers," he said. "I fully expect that I'll have complete trust in their final analysis."

Goliad City Councilwoman Liz Holsey said she is disappointed in the Rangers' investigation.

Holsey, who formerly served on the development board, said she was notified Thursday that the Rangers had closed the case.

"The only thing they looked at was the loans; they didn't do anything else," she said. "Their investigation wasn't very thorough. I'm just disappointed."



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