Ladners’ trial for Katrina kickbacks rescheduled for September

BAY ST. LOUIS — The trial for former Hancock County Road Manager Roger Ladner and his relatives in an alleged kickback scheme related to Hurricane Katrina cleanup contracts has been rescheduled.

Roger Ladner, his wife Sharon Ladner, and his two brothers Billy Wayne Ladner and Donald Ray Ladner, all pleaded not guilty last month. Prosecutors said the scheme involved cleanup contracts alleged awarded to the then-road manager’s close relatives in the wake of the 2005 hurricane.

The Sun Herald reports federal court documents show the trial for the four, which had been set for later this month, is now scheduled for Sept. 10 in Gulfport.

Roger Ladner, Sharon Ladner and Donald Ray Ladner are charged with money-laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit bribery and falsification of records in a federal investigation. Billy Wayne Ladner is charged with money laundering conspiracy and conspiracy to commit bribery.

Prosecutors allege Roger Ladner awarded ditch cleaning contracts to relatives and a portion of the money was funneled back to him and his wife.

The federal government is seeking to seize the proceeds of more than $1 million in transactions it alleges are related to scheme. The government says the transactions came in 34 checks, one as much as $234,000, and several for more than $50,000.

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