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August 2022


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Tag: Bobby DeLaughter

Ex-Mississippi Judge Bobby DeLaughter Gets 18 Months for Lying to FBI Agent

Judge Bobby DeLaughter/gov photo

Judge Bobby DeLaughter/gov photo

By Allan Lengel

Ex-Hinds County, Miss. Circuit Judge Bobby DeLaughter who made history as a prosecutor in the 1990s, is headed off to jail for lying to an FBI agent during a judicial corruption probe, the Associated Press reported.

U.S. District Judge Glen Davidson in Aberdeen, Miss.  sentenced him to 18 months in prison, the news agency reported.

DeLaughter found fame in the 1990s as an assistant district attorney after he  helped convict Byron de la Beckwith in for
the 1963 murder of civil rights leader Medgar Evers, which became the subject of a Hollywood movie.

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Judge in Miss. Pleads Guilty to Obstruction of Justice; Lied to FBI Agents

Bobby DeLaughter was a hero and did great things as a prosecutor. Will this erase his legacy?

Judge Bobby DeLaughter/gov photo

Judge Bobby DeLaughter/gov photo

By Jerry Mitchell
Jackson Clarion Ledger
ABERDEEN, Miss. – He wore the suit of an acclaimed prosecutor before donning the robe of a well-respected judge. Now Bobby DeLaughter expects to wear the uniform of a prison inmate.

Hours after resigning his $104,000-a-year job as Hinds County circuit judge, DeLaughter, 55, pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice. Under his plea agreement, he would serve 18 months in prison and wouldn’t have to cooperate with federal authorities in their continuing investigation. No date has been set for sentencing.

Under the agreement, DeLaughter’s remaining four counts of mail fraud conspiracy and involvement in a bribery scheme would be dismissed.

But if U.S. District Judge Glen Davidson rejects the plea deal, DeLaughter can withdraw his guilty plea and go on trial. His trial had been set for Aug. 17.

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Read Plea Agreement

Indicted Mississippi Judge Was Civil Rights Era Hero

A reputation as a legend, years of public service, all tainted by criminal charges.

New York Times

As a young prosecutor in the early 1990s, Bobby DeLaughter was a hero to the civil rights community, a white Mississippian who gambled with his future by pursuing an old race crime that many in the state simply wanted to forget. Mr. DeLaughter’s doggedness in prosecuting the white supremacist Byron De La Beckwith was celebrated in a Hollywood film and in books, and he was regarded as a model of probity.
This week though, Mr. DeLaughter, now a Mississippi judge, suffered an abrupt reversal of fortune: he appeared in leg irons and handcuffs in federal court in Oxford, Miss., pleading not guilty to a federal indictment accusing him of unduly favoring the celebrated former plaintiffs’ lawyer Richard Scruggs, now serving seven years for efforts to influence judges, including Mr. DeLaughter.
Judge DeLaughter has been caught in a bribery scandal that has rocked the legal establishment in his home state, and brought low some of its leading figures. The millions that Mr. Scruggs gained in asbestos and tobacco litigation have sloshed over an impoverished state, continuing to taint public officials and lawyers, figures likely and unlikely. On Friday, a former Mississippi state auditor, Steve Patterson, was sentenced for his part in a Scruggs-inspired scheme, a day after Judge DeLaughter’s own court appearance.
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