Former AR judge admits bribing with federal funds for campaign donations


Former Ouachita County Judge James Hesterly admitted to bribery with federal funds in exchange for a campaign donation Wednesday.

According to Conner Eldridge, United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, James Hesterly, 50, of Camden, pleaded guilty to one count of bribery concerning a program receiving federal funds and could face up to 10 years in prison.

Hesterly and Harry Clemons Jr., 39, of Bearden, were indicted in January 2013 for a scheme to award a Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster-relief contract to Clemons by rigging the bidding process in return for a contribution to Hesterly’s 2010 reelection campaign for Ouachita County Judge. Hesterly had been the county judge of Ouachita County Arkansas for the past 10 years.

at The Arkansas Project.