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Cops: Gwinnett church leader posed as lawyer, accountant and stole from customers

A purported Norcross church leader was arrested Wednesday after authorities said she posed as a lawyer and accountant, stealing money from clients. 

Melva Washington, 60, of Duluth, was arrested at the Anointed Vision Church in the 6100 block of Atlantic Boulevard, Channel 2 Action News reported. She faces two counts of first-degree forgery, four counts of false statements or writings and three counts of unauthorized practice of law, according to Gwinnett County jail records. 

Melva Washington was arrested in a raid at a Norcross church. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)

Gwinnett authorities and Homeland Security raided the church and found Washington inside. She allegedly ran an illegal tax preparation business, law practice and day care, according to Channel 2. 

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Washington is also believed to have given clients fake Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, or DACA, paperwork. One victim told Channel 2 he paid $1,200 for the documents. 

Washington was denied bond Thursday and remains in the Gwinnett jail.

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