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Steven B. Jones

Steven B. Jones

Little Rock, Ark. — Two co-conspirators in the Ted Suhl federal bribery case, Steven B. Jones, 51, and Phillip W. Carter, 47, both of Marion, Ark., have been sentenced for their participation in the scheme that allegedly involved Suhl, 50, of Warm Springs, Ark., founder of the Lord’s Ranch and owner of two mental health agencies that primarily served juveniles.
First Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick C. Harris and Assistant U.S. Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell today announced that U.S. District Judge Billy Ray Wilson sentenced Jones to 30 months in the Bureau of Prisons and a one year supervised release plus a $6,000 fine on two counts of conspiracy to commit bribery involving federal funds and honest services wire fraud involving federal funds. Jones, who is former Deputy Director of the Arkansas Department of Human Services, pled guilty to the charges.
Carter was sentenced to 24 months and two years supervised release for conspiracy to commit bribery and honest services wire fraud. He also pled guilty to the charges.
Carter was a Crittenden County probation officer and a West Memphis, Ark., city councilman.
According to the plea, Jones, starting in 2007 when he was ADHS Deputy Director, solicited and accepted cash payments and other things of value from Suhl.
The bribery scheme passed payoffs through Carter and a local pastor (who has not been identified), and for this Jones admitted that he performed official acts that benefited Suhl and his businesses.
The group met at Memphis restaurants and rural Arkansas restaurants where they would not be recognized. The payoff money was funneled through the pastor’s church, according to the plea.
Ted Suhl was indicted on Dec. 2, 2015, arraigned on Dec. 15 and is awaiting trial on these charges: conspiracy to commit bribery, one count of federal funds bribery, three counts of honest wire services fraud, and one count of interstate travel in aid of bribery.
Suhl’s trial date is July 12 before Judge Wilson. Suhl will be represented by two prominent, high-powered defense attorneys: Chuck Banks of Little Rock and Robert Cary of Washington, D.C.
Suhl is the owner of Trinity Behavioral Health (formerly Lord’s Ranch) and Maxus (sometimes known as Arkansas Counseling Associates). The facilities provide in-patient and outpatient mental health services primarily to juveniles. Lord’s Ranch is located in Warm Springs in Randolph County Ark.
Lord's Ranch (2009 photo)

Lord’s Ranch (2009 photo)

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