Trial Delayed For Former Ouachita County Judge

Apr 4, 2014

A federal judge has delayed the trial of a former Ouachita County judge accused of awarding a disaster-relief contract in exchange for a campaign contribution.

Mike Hesterly was set to go to trial Monday on bribery and fraud charges, but a judge on Friday delayed the trial until July 8.

Hesterly's lawyers had sought a delay, saying that Hesterly was recovering from a recent back surgery.

A federal grand jury indicted Hesterly and contractor Harry Clemons Jr. in January 2013, alleging . The indictment alleges Hesterly hired Clemons to help clean up the county following October 2009 storms after Clemons arranged for two other people to submit inflated bids to ensure he received a contract backed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Clemons pleaded guilty last month to one count of conspiracy.