Thursday, February 9, 2017

Hood goes after Epps accomplices

Attorney General Jim Hood issued the following press release. 


AG JIM HOOD FILES CIVIL RICO ACTION TO RECOUP STATE FUNDS AND PENALTIES AGAINST ALL CONSPIRATORS IN MDOC PRISON BRIBERY SCANDAL





JACKSON— Attorney General Jim Hood announced today that he has filed 11 civil RICO lawsuits against all corporate and individual conspirators in the prison bribery scandal.



Attorney General Hood is seeking damages and punitive damages against the following individuals and corporations:  former Mississippi Department of Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps; Cecil McCrory; Robert Simmons; Irb Benjamin; Sam Waggoner; Mark Longoria; Teresa Malone; Carl Reddix; Michael Reddix; Andrew Jenkins; Management & Training Corporation; The GEO Group, Inc.; Cornell Companies, Inc.; Wexford Health Sources, Inc.; The Bantry Group Corporation; AdminPros, L.L.C.; CGL Facility Management, LLC; Mississippi Correctional Management, Inc.; Branan Medical Corporation; Drug Testing Corporation; Global Tel*Link Corporation; Health Assurance, LLC; Keefe Commissary Network, LLC; Sentinel Offender Services, L.L.C. and AJA Management & Technical Services, Inc.



“The state of Mississippi has been defrauded through a pattern of bribery, kickbacks, misrepresentations, fraud, concealment, money laundering and other wrongful conduct,” Attorney General Hood said. “These individuals and corporations that benefited by stealing from taxpayers must not only pay the state's losses, but state law requires that they must also forfeit and return the entire amount of the contracts paid by the state.  We are also seeking punitive damages to punishment these conspirators and to deter those who might consider giving or receiving kickbacks in the future."



According to the lawsuits, multiple corporations, including some of the most prominent private prison contractors, paid millions of dollars in so-called “consulting fees” to individuals who then used those fees to pay bribes and kickbacks to Epps. Based on those bribes and kickbacks, Epps awarded, directed or extended approximately $800 million in public contracts to those private prison contractors.



To date, Epps, McCrory, Simmons, Benjamin, Waggoner and Longoria have pleaded guilty to their involvement in the conspiracy.




Attorney General Hood alleges that the defendants violated Mississippi’s public ethics, racketeering and antitrust laws, along with several other claims. The Attorney General is seeking compensatory and punitive damages, as well as forfeiture of all funds received by the individuals and corporations that were involved in these conspiracies.



“Out-of-state corporations were eager to take advantage of Mississippi taxpayers and secure MDOC contracts through bribery and fraud. It is critical for the state to use the remedies at its disposal to recover damages and get back the money exchanged in these schemes,” Attorney General Hood said. “I have a duty to protect the integrity of the public contracting process, as well as to vindicate the rights of the state when it is a victim of public corruption and other wrongful conduct.”  

25 comments:

This Poster Thanks Hood.. said...

One helluvan endeavor and to be congratulated. Say what you will about politics, haircuts and personalities, this is a very promising move.

Can't wait to read the Tater, Feel and Fisher remarks, which will have nothing to do with anything but will give the keyboard-warriors their morning finger-exercise.

Anonymous said...

This is why Tate and Phil wanted to reign in Hood. Lots of bad news to come out of depositions in this case.

Whenever you see someone trying to stop information from being seen....there is a reason.

Anonymous said...

Keefe Commissary Network, has never stopped doing business with the state of Mississippi.

I don't understand, why they are still doing business on Greenfield Rd in Pearl, MS.

The word on the street, which I might add that is pretty reliable, there are several other people and pay offs the government are not going after. Pay offs for the new Federal Court House, and the new FBI building; because they don't want to be embarrassed.

Anonymous said...

Me too 4:45 am Wonder how such bad things keep happening right under Feel's and Tater's noses ? All these scandals in their party and their administration and they don't seem to know what's going on in their own administration until the scandals break.

Anonymous said...

Hmm
What is the difference in 'consulting fees' to 'secure' a contract that Hood objects to?

I mean, aren't those the same as 'lobbying' fees paid to secure favorable bacon in a bill?
Or 'consultant' fees to his 'assistant AG' trial lawyer friends?
Should'nt we sue for recovery of the 'free' talk show time on Shallow show for Kemper plant? (and anything else they tell him to plug)
For the Beef plant? (friends of Hood?)
For the Port expansion? (fiends of Haley) PS no mo bananas there
For the tax bonds that havent been paid by development company on Lowes in Ridgeland/highland colony (mayor of Ridgeland friend?)
I mean lets not stop here, lets go Conway!!!! Lets go whole hog! I am with you!!!

Anonymous said...

"The word on the street, which I might add that is pretty reliable, there are several other people and pay offs the government are (sic) not going after".....

Yeah. That "word on the street". "I might add it's pretty reliable." Oh, yeah. Like, getting ideas from your dog, or, let's say, those voices in your head that have great ideas, right? The tinfoil on your head is loose?


It's all a conspiracy! Run! Not mattering that the FBI and US Courthouse is Federal, that the contractors are from 1000 miles away, and that this would involve GSA, a Federal Agency, and not this entirely state agency and monies mess.

"The word on the street....." What, Whitfield Road? That's right next to Greenfield, too, so ironically. (Or, maybe not so ironically.)

This Poster Thanks Hood... said...

6:32: Epps and his band of merry-men predated Feel and Tater by at least a decade, plus a few years. You can track most of this all the way back to McCoy and a dozen democrats who assembled in Jackson every January.

But I understand how convenient it is to pretend you don't know that.

Anonymous said...

Hood making the run to be Governor and with the weak Rs left make work.

Anonymous said...

7:55
They are now Republicans because it benefits them. Many of the so called Republicans were once Democrats. In state politics it really matters very little. Very few are there for true public service.

Anonymous said...

There is no RICO violation in that complaint.

Anonymous said...

Some of these companies are still under contract and doing business with the state, so why would Hood be suing them? Makes no sense to go after companies that were not actually involved.

Anonymous said...

Why was Guy "Butch" Evans left out? Does insurance fraud not count??

Parchmann Redemption said...

I agree that this action is to be congratulated - very rarely does a state go after the secondary, tertiary and supporting actors in a criminal conspiracy. Too often, the government considers its work done when a few arrests are made and the problem has the appearance of being solved. In this case, the contracting process during Epps' tenure at the MDOC has all of the hallmarks of a continuing criminal enterprise where the unspoken rule was "pay to play." While I don't always agree with General Hood, he's doing the right thing here by following the trail of money and associated influence.

Anonymous said...

Dang Conway

You almost let this parade get through before you jumped on the bandwagon. It is too late (this time) for you to try your normal stunt if trying to jump out front and pretend that you are leading the band.

But glad to see you get in on the fun. Guess you figured out a way to funnel some of this off to one of your contributors so they can make this year's condo or yacht payments from the 'fees' you can pass on to them.

Anonymous said...

Where do all the roads intersect? Big Bucks Bennie?

Anonymous said...

You can bet your sweet ass (and mine too) that Epps was getting advice and inspiration from Benny on potential contractors. Ain't a black politician alive who doesn't know every potential contractor and how many silver plated shovels he has.

Anonymous said...

Be on the lookout for the THANK YOU note to Mike Hurst for doing Conway Twitty's job for him. I am sure there is one out there.

What a poser.

Anonymous said...

Cases of Imodium are being delivered, daily, to the legislature as we speak.

Anonymous said...

Can you imagine the depositions in this case?

I may file to intervene on behalf of the estate of the dead legislator just to sit in Epps' depo....

Anonymous said...

Cue up the music from Goodfellas.....

This has Mark Bakers name written all over it...wait until these Rankin county connections get looped in....

Civil Rico is an arcane statute neutered by the third circuit years ago...it was designed to deal body blows to the mob....

In theory Hood could chase this money all the way up to Phil.....

The cases are hard to win....they are harder to survive if there is a kernel of truth in them....and Epps is Orvil damn Reddenbacher

As An Aside.. said...

Have you noticed that Steve Holland always sits with his back to the wall?

Anonymous said...

Desire for Cecil McCrory to die in prison, assuming he has reported and is now locked up. Only got eight years I think.

Anonymous said...

I hope AG Hood looks into the paper products contracts and those connected consultants who arrange these overprice agreements.The Feds have not acted yet so he could claim this one as his own and not an Elvis come lately.

Anonymous said...

Is it true that Holland has a contract to pick up the bodies?

Anonymous said...

Nothing more than standard election year BS tactics from hood. Prove the RICO violations, there are none. It was all EPPS and other individuals based on EPPS mandating kickbacks. Be willing to bet most, if not all companies had no knowledge of what really was going on. EPPS needs to ROT in jail.

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