Former Arkansas Senator, Accused of Funneling State Money, Has Trial Canceled

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The trial for former Sen. Jon Woods, R-Springdale, has been canceled, officials say.

Court records state a federal judge canceled the trial that was set to begin Monday.

This comes after that same judge denied Woods’ request for a continuance on Thursday.

A defense attorney in the case said this comes after the defense team discovered 79 recordings, covering 52 hours of conversation, that were made by former Rep. Micah Neal, R-Springdale. He’s pleaded guilty to being part of the scheme and set to be a witness for the government, according to the Arkansas Times.

The attorney also said it’s unlikely this trial will be rescheduled before 2018.

Woods and two other men have been accused of funneling state money into an account at Ecclesia College in Springdale.

In turn, Woods and Oren Paris, III would receive kickbacks from the school. Paris, also indicted, is Ecclesia College’s President.

The third man accused is Randall Shelton, Jr. He’s listed in the indictment as part of a consulting company that was used to pay and conceal the kickbacks.

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