Balducci and other witnesses being brought back to Oxford for trial

With a little more than a month away from Hinds County Circuit Judge Bobby DeLaughter’s corruption trial, the U.S. attorney’s office is bringing in witnesses imprisoned for their roles in attempting to bribe a different judge.

Records from the Bureau of Prisons show Timothy Balducci has been moved from his prison in South Carolina to a transfer facility in Oklahoma. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Norman confirmed Balducci was being brought to the Lafayette County Detention Center.

Norman said he is bringing Balducci and others back so they could discuss details of DeLaughter’s Aug. 17 trial.

During a motions hearing in a separate judicial bribery case against Scruggs, his attorney, John Keker, said Lott would be called as a defense witness. The testimony would have been about Lott’s involvement in the DeLaughter case.

DeLaughter’s attorney Tom Durkin, is not confirming if he intends to call on Lott to testify. He also wouldn’t comment on any other potential witnesses.

Scruggs, who was already serving five years in prison, is serving an additional two years after pleading guilty to attempting to bribe DeLaughter. He is expected to testify at DeLaughter’s trial; however, Scruggs has not been moved from his prison in Kentucky.

The only person other than Scruggs to plead guilty in the DeLaughter case is Langston. Langston’s attorney, Tony Farese, said his client would be brought back to Oxford soon but he couldn’t say when.

Paul Quinn