Judge recommends against Conn dismissal

LEXINGTON, Ky. — A federal magistrate judge has recommended that the original criminal case against Eric C. Conn proceed as planned.

Conn had sought to have the case dismissed. In it, he is charged with 18 various counts, including mail fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy and money laundering. In 2016, he pleaded guilty to separate charges of theft and bribery, in exchange for having the original case dropped.

Then, he disappeared from home incarceration and didn’t resurface until he was captured in Honduras six months later.

Prosecutors say Conn’s alleged escape nullified the plea agreement, and they announced their intention to scrap it and proceed with the original charges.

On Friday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Wier agreed. Wier wrote in his recommendation that Conn’s “inarguable, fundamental breaches of that plea agreement the government from its corresponding prospective obligations.”

Conn and prosecutors now have until May 18 to file any objections to the recommendation, before U.S. District Judge Danny Reeves issues a final order.