Scruggs surrenders, admits to conspiracy to bribe judge

One of the most powerful plaintiffs attorneys in the country has admitted to trying to grease the wheels of justice.

Richard “Dickie” Scruggs pleaded guilty Friday to attempting to bribe a state judge in a legal dispute over attorneys fees, as did his associate Sidney Backstrom.

The move came after months of maintaining his innocence and claiming that federal investigators manufactured the crime and just before the Monday deadline for plea deals. It is not known yet if his son and law partner at the Scruggs Law Firm, Zach, has entered a plea.

Scruggs kept his answers short and simple before U.S. District Judge Neal Biggers, while Backstrom was much more emotional and eventually broke down crying. He offered an apology to the Court, something Scruggs did not do.

Scruggs, 61, agreed to a maximum prison sentence of five years, pleading guilty to a conspiracy charge while the other five were dropped. Biggers said to expect news of sentencing in 30-40 days.

Legal Newsline
3/14/8