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FORMER BILOXI MAYOR IS INDICTED WITH 3 OTHERS IN 1987 SLAYINGS

Former Biloxi Mayor Pete Halat Jr. and three other people were indicted Tuesday on federal charges in the deaths nine years ago of a judge and his wife, a former councilwoman.

The indictment accused Halat of participating in a telephone scam that preyed on lonely homosexuals and agreeing to the 1987 contract murders of Circuit Judge Vincent Sherry -- a onetime law partner of Halat's -- and his wife, Margaret.

In 1991, four people were found guilty of conspiring to kill Sherry and operating the jailhouse scam, which bilked hundreds of thousands of dollars from gays who answered fake personal ads.

Two of the four were indicted Tuesday on the new charges -- Kirskey McCord Nix Jr., a Louisiana prison inmate who was the alleged mastermind of the scam, and Sheri LaRa Sharpe, who once worked in Halat's law office and allegedly assisted in the scam.

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