Former town manager indicted after SBI probe

BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A former Bladenboro town manager has been indicted on a felony fraud charge after a probe by the State Bureau of Investigation.

A Bladen County grand jury indicted Delane Jackson, who was forced to resign in 2013, Monday morning on one count of obtaining property by false pretenses in excess of $100,000, according to District Attorney Jon David. Jackson surrendered himself to the Columbus County jail Monday afternoon, where he posted a $50,000 unsecured bond, and was released.

In October 2017, the SBI confirmed it was investigating Jackson and Cygnus, a company Jackson had ties to while he was town manager of the rural Bladen County town. In 2005, Cygnus won a contract to provide wastewater treatment services for the town and was reportedly paid more than $450,000 during Jackson's time as town manager.

But in 2013, the same day a new mayor was sworn into office, Cygnus abruptly quit. The town was able to hire another company to provide wastewater treatment services at a fraction of the cost it had been paying Cygnus.

Town leaders previously said they never saw a single Cygnus work truck, employee, or any other evidence that services were actually rendered. Jackson's connections to the company only came to light after his employment with the town ended.

Jackson approved all invoices and signed all checks for the town while he served as town manager, according to town leaders.

Jon David said neither the District Attorney's office nor the SBI were consulted on Jackson's bond amount.

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