Sentencing delayed for former MDOC Commissioner

Christopher Epps (File Photo)

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Former Mississippi Department of Corrections Commissioner Chris Epps was in federal court this morning but his sentencing is rescheduled for July.

Epps pleaded guilty last year but now he’ll have to wait even longer to find out his sentence.

He wouldn’t talk to WJTV about the delay as he left court.

Epps was mostly silent as he walked out of the federal courthouse in Jackson Monday.

He will be sentenced on Monday, July 18, 2016.

But, had nothing to say about the delay.

“I don’t have any comment. Thank you guys,” said Epps.

Epps is accused of getting about $1,500,000 in bribes for prison contracts.

His lawyer, John Collete was also tight lipped.

“You heard our arguments in court. That’s really all we have. We can’t comment at this particular juncture,” said Collete.

What we learned in court is the amount of money involved in the bribery scheme has gone up.

The government initially said contracts were valued at over $300,000,000.

New information from the government shows contracts worth over $800,000,000.

The Internal Revenue Service is assisting the Federal Bureau of Investigation with the case.

“We were able to uncover violations of the tax code, money laundering and violations of the bank secrecy act,” said Special Agent In Charge Jerome Mcduffie of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Businessman Cecil McCrory was also charged in the scandal.

Monday, his lawyer, Carlos Tanner said he will withdraw his client’s guilty plea.

Tanner told WJTV that the amount of money reported by the government is “grossly inflated”.

“I think the evidence will overwhelmingly demonstrate that my client should be allowed to take his guilty plea off the table,” said Tanner.

The next hearing is scheduled for Thursday, June 9, 2016.

WJTV will continue to follow this story.


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