The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, 1/10/9

Federal investigators looking at allegations former Oxford attorney Richard “Dickie” Scruggs and others bribed a Hinds County circuit judge can keep key witness Joey Langston close as the case plays out.

U.S. District Court Chief Judge Michael P. Mills agreed Friday to delay Langston’s prison-report date from Jan. 15 to March 16.

Earlier this week, the government asked Mills for the delay, describing the former Booneville attorney as “a crucial witness in an ongoing investigation.”

Langston pleaded guilty on Jan. 7, 2008, to being part of an alleged conspiracy to bribe Circuit Judge Bobby DeLaughter with the promise of a federal judgeship, if he would help Scruggs with a legal-fees lawsuit against him.

Under oath, Langston said others involved in the scheme were former Hinds District Attorney Ed Peters, for whom DeLaughter once worked, Timothy Balducci and Steven Patterson of New Albany.

No one but Langston has been legally ensnared publicly in this case, named Scruggs II by prosecutors.