Louisiana men charged in Kemper County bribe scheme

KEMPER COUNTY,Miss. (AP)- Four Louisiana men say they’ll plead guilty to charges that they tried to bribe Kemper County’s sheriff with $2,000 in casino chips, seeking lucrative jail contracts.

The Associated Press reports Michael LeBlanc Sr. of Baton Rouge, Michael LeBlanc Jr. of Prairieville, Tawasky Ventroy of Opelousas and Jacque Jones of LaPlace have filed notices saying they will change their pleas.

All are accused of scheming to win contracts to sell inmates phone service and commissary goods at a jail in Kemper County by trying to bribe Kemper County Sheriff James Moore.

The indictment also says the men paid former Mississippi Corrections Commissioner Christopher Epps $2,000 for help in getting contracts. Epps was convicted of taking more than $1.4 million in bribes and is serving a nearly 20-year prison sentence.

U.S. District Judge Henry T. Wingate has set a plea hearing for Oct. 2 in Jackson.

All four remain free on bail.

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