Monday, June 5, 2006

"Everybody Got Some Semi-hustle."

Posted By on Mon, Jun 5, 2006 at 4:00 AM

Roscoe Dixon told an undercover FBI agent he was frustrated with his limited financial resources as a state legislator and that his dream was to be mayor of Memphis.

Jurors in Dixon’s federal court trial Monday listened to more tapes of Dixon and bag man Barry Myers, lobbyist Tim Willis, and undercover agent L.C. McNeil, who posed as vice-president of E-Cycle Management.

“Man, you be lucky to clear $30,000,” Dixon says of his job as a lawmaker, which paid a base salary of $16,000 plus per-diem expenses.

Dixon, charged with taking bribes from E-Cycle, says that to supplement their income from the legislature, “everybody got some semi-hustle.”

Dixon expresses his desire to “get in the big leagues” with a full-time job as General Sessions Court Clerk. He ran for the office in 2004 but lost, and subsequently got a job paying roughly $100,000 from Shelby County Mayor A C Wharton. He was forced to resign when he was indicted in 2005.

Dixon said he and Wharton and Harold Ford Sr. were close friends “like brothers” and political partners who formed “the team” and “the network.” If he could have been elected clerk, he would have had “150 employees,” credit cards, and more power than a state senator.

“L.C,” the fake executive, did not give his real name on the witness stand because he works undercover. He said he is a former full-time minister who still works part-time as a minister in addition to his FBI job. On the tape, he tells Dixon he is concerned that E-Cycle will lose its influence in Nashville if Dixon takes a job with Shelby County.

But Dixon assures him that administrators are “the big dog on the porch” and that he would be able to implement contracts.

“I’d be really operating the county government basically,” he says.

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