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      Feds use fraud cases to pitch corruption hot line

      Federal officials used a guilty plea last week by a former Jackson County Circuit Court administrator as a springboard to announce a new telephone hotline people can call to report public corruption.

      Former administrator Teresa York pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of mail fraud, admitting that she used credit cards issued by the court for nearly $78,000 in unauthorized purchases.

      Her corruption case is one of several in Missouri and Kansas in recent months, and FBI special agent in charge Michael Kaste says they show why the public's help is needed to weed out official misdeeds.

      Kaste, U.S. Attorney Tammy Dickinson of Missouri and U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom in Kansas held a joint news conference Thursday to announce the hotline. The number is 1-855-KCPCTIP or 1-855-527-2847.

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