Scruggs enters guilty plea in judicial bribery case

Powerful plaintiffs attorney Richard "Dickie" Scruggs has pleaded guilty to federal judicial bribery charges.

The surprise plea came Friday during a hearing in Oxford on pretrial matters in advance of his scheduled March 31 trial.

Scruggs and co-defendant Sidney Backstrom both pleaded guilty to conspiring to bribe a judge. No plea has yet been entered by Scruggs' son, Zach. The three were accused of conspiring to bribe a Lafayette County Circuit Court judge for a favorable ruling in a dispute over $26.5 million in legal fees from a mass settlement of Hurricane Katrina cases.