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AG: $27M from contractors in prison bribery case

(AP) — Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood said Thursday that his office is collecting nearly $27 million from contractors involved in bribing a former head of the state prison system.

The money comes from 11 lawsuits filed in February 2017. The lawsuits said the contractors used consultants to influence Corrections Commissioner Christopher Epps, who resigned in 2014 after a dozen years on the job.

Epps acknowledged accepting more than $1.4 million in bribes and pleaded guilty in 2015. He is serving a nearly 20-year federal prison sentence.

Hood said more than $10 million of the money is going into the general state budget, nearly $7 million is going to the Department of Corrections and more than $6 million is for fees and expenses of attorneys who sued on behalf of the state.