Sex for pleas case to end with D.A. pleading guilty
Dave Cohen Reporting
Four years after he abruptly quit, former St. Charles Parish District Attorney Harry Morel heads to federal court today to plead guilty to corruption. The charges stem from a sex scandal.
The probe began with allegations that Morel was trading lenient plea deals for sexual favors from defendants.
"He was D.A. for 33 years," WWL TV Legal Analyst Chick Foret noted. "A bill of information was unsealed... charging the former D.A. with obstruction of justice."
That charge comes after Morel admitted that he ordered the destruction of pictures that could have been used against him in the FBI investigation into the alleged sex for plea deals.
According to court documents, Morel "corruptly instructed Individual A to 'get rid of' and 'destroy' evidence and to deny the inappropriate nature of their meetings."
Prosecutors say he also tried to force a witness to keep quiet.
"Harry Morel Jr. intentionally harassed Individual A, and thereby hindered, delayed, prevented and dissuaded Individual A from attending and testifying in federal grand jury proceedings investigating possible wrongdoing by Harry Morel Jr," the bill of information states.
The charge could land Morel in federal prison for three years.