Harrison County Contractor Going to Prison for Home Repair Fraud

December 17, 2013

A Harrison county contractor is going to prison for home repair fraud, announced Attorney General Jim Hood today.

James Helmes, 49, last known to be residing in a Louisiana prison, has been sentenced after pleading guilty to one count of home repair fraud before Judge Lisa Dodson in Harrison County Circuit Court. Helmes was sentenced to five years with three years suspended, meaning he will serve two years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections. He was ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution and must serve three years on supervised probation following his release.

The Attorney General’s Office received the homeowners complaint in 2005 following Hurricane Katrina. Helmes did not return to his work site and finish the job, nor did he pay the contractors working on the job. Helmes was extradited to Mississippi from Louisiana where he was serving time for a separate crime.

“We are happy to finally see justice served for this Coast homeowner,” said Attorney General Hood.

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Mark A. Ward and was investigated by Shannon Beaver of the Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division.

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