Former North Lee Co. Water head faces federal charge

By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Former North Lee County Water Association manager Dan Durham will answer to criminal charges in federal court next month.

Durham, who was forced to resign from his position in October 2011 amid allegations of corruption from employees, will appear on Dec. 12 in Aberdeen before U.S. District Judge Sharion Aycock.

According to the court document, Durham will waive an indictment and plead guilty to one count of an “information.”

Sometimes after a grand jury indictment, a person under investigation agrees to cooperate, take a polygraph and provide information about others who may have been involved.

If the government is satisfied with the cooperation, defense counsel usually negotiates a deal for a charge or “information” with lesser punishment.

Because the case is sealed, the charge isn’t yet public.

A call to Durham’s attorney, Anthony Farese, wasn’t immediately returned Tuesday, nor was a call to U.S. Attorney Robert J. Mims, who is prosecuting the case.

Read more in Wednesday’s Daily Journal.