Bernard Brown's Trial Pushed Back

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By Hilary LeHew

BENTON -- A trial involving the former Cairo police chief has been pushed back a month.

Last December, Bernard Brown, 48, of Cairo, was indicted for filing false disaster relief claims with FEMA. His trial was originally scheduled to start on Feb. 21.

During an appearance Friday at the Benton federal courthouse, Brown's new attorney, Joshua Bradley of Marion, asked for more time to prepare.

Brown faces four counts of making false statements and one count of disaster relief fraud. He's accused of sending five different faxes to FEMA between September 2011 and June 2012.
 
In the faxes, Brown asked for money to cover his relocation expenses and claimed his house on 26th Street needed repairs after the 2011 flood. Brown also said he'd been forced to move into a rental home on 3rd Street.
 
When News 3 visited that home on 3rd Street in December, our crew found a family that said they had been living there for two years.
    
Calls to Cairo city leaders were not returned Friday. Brown is no longer police chief in Cairo. Kirk Snelson took over the position in December.
 
Brown's trial is now set to begin on Mar. 31.
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