Scruggs’ exploited judge’s ‘vulnerabilities’

To bribe Circuit Court Judge Bobby DeLaughter, Dickie Scruggs exploited two vulnerabilities, according to court records: DeLaughter’s close friendship to former Hinds County District Attorney Ed Peters and “his known ambition to become a federal judge.”

The Scruggs legal team’s strategy to bribe DeLaughter is outlined in court records filed with Scruggs’ guilty plea Wednesday in federal court to one count of mail fraud. Scruggs will serve seven years in prison. In exchange for the plea, U.S. Attorneys agreed not to indict Scruggs but have indicated others will be charged, partly due to his cooperation.

Booneville attorney Joey Langston already has pleaded guilty in the case. Peters, who received $1 million for influencing protege DeLaughter, is also believed to be cooperating with investigators.

Sun Herald
2/11/9