UPDATE: Govt. lawyer dismisses counts against Neilson

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

OXFORD – It’s official: U.S. prosecutor Richard Bourgeois today formally dismissed remaining criminal charges against Oxford FBI agent, Hal Neilson.

In a two-page motion, Bourgeois said the government cannot meet its burden to prove Neilson guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Last Jan. 13, Neilson was indicted on five counts that he lied about his financial interests in the Oxford FBI building where he worked.

He contended all along that he was innocent. So did his attorneys, Christy R. McCoy of Oxford and Ronald Michael of Booneville.

Today, speaking for Neilson, they said they were overjoyed at the news.

“It really will be a happy Christmas,” Michael said.

* For more, read Thursday’s Daily Journal

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2:30 p.m.
OXFORD – FBI agent Hal Neilson may indeed be a free man shortly.

Just minutes ago, his attorney Ronald Michael of Booneville told the Daily Journal remaining charges against Neilson will be dropped in the next few minutes.

Neilson, 49, of Oxford was indicted Jan. 13 on five counts that he lied to federal investigators about his fiinancial interests in the FBI’s Oxford Office.

A federal jury in Aberdeen found him not guilty on two of those counts Nov. 20, but couldn’t reach a verdict on the other three. Sources said the jury’s vote to acquit was 10-2 on them, although that could not be confirmed.

Soon after the verdicts, Judge Sharion Aycock re-set a January trial date on the rest of the charges.

Read more in Thursday’s Daily Journal or at NEMS360.com.