- Associated Press - Thursday, September 24, 2015

LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - The federal bribery investigation into the Lafayette Parish District attorney’s Office that sent a former secretary to prison comes to a close Friday when the key figure is scheduled to be sentenced.

The Advertiser reports (https://bit.ly/1OUx6eR) Robert Williamson, the former private investigator who was at the center of the bribery scheme that offered quick resolution of drunk driving and drug cases, pleaded guilty in June to three of nine charges for which he was indicted in 2013.

Williamson signed a pea deal June 8 admitting guilt to one count each of conspiracy to commit bribery, bribery involving a program that receives federal funds and Social Security fraud.

Five counts of bribery and one count of making a false statement to a federal agent were dismissed when Williamson signed the plea agreement.

He could face up to 20 years in federal prison and up to $750,000 in fines for the three charges.

Williamson also forfeits $22,855 in cash and money orders seized by the FBI in February 2012, according to a preliminary order signed Sept. 3 by U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Foote.

Barna Haynes, the long-time secretary to former 15th Judicial District Attorney Mike Harson, is serving 18 months in the Carswell Federal Medical Facility, a medium-security prison/medical facility in Fort Worth, Texas.

She was sentenced in July on one count of conspiracy to commit bribery. Her release date is Dec. 14, 2016, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Two other employees in the DA’s office - Assistant District Attorney Greg Williams and his secretary Denease Curry - pleaded guilty as well. Williams pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery and was sentenced to two years probation and six months of home confinement.

Curry pleaded guilty to one count of misprision of a felony for failing to report the bribes. She was sentenced to two years probation and 200 hours of community service.

Harson was not implicated in the bribery scheme.

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Information from: The Advertiser, https://www.theadvertiser.com


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