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W.Va. Multifest board urged to resign

Jan. 26, 2013 @ 08:31 AM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia pastor and Charleston community organizer is calling for the board of an annual cultural festival to resign amid a federal embezzlement scandal.

The Rev. Matthew Watts says the public’s trust in the West Virginia Multicultural Festival has been irreparably damaged by the case.

Federal prosecutors say Deborah Starks admitted to tax fraud related to an embezzlement scheme that drained more than $300,000 from MultiFest. She co-founded the annual event with husband Stephen Starks in the early 1990s.

The Rev. Roy Terry is the newly appointed Multifest board president. He does not think the organization’s board must step down to restore public confidence.

The Daily Mail reports that instead, Terry says, the board is restructuring its accounting system. He plans to have the festival again this summer.
 

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