Diaz named public defender

Published 1:59 am Sunday, January 25, 2009

Former State Supreme Court Justice Oliver Diaz Jr. has been named youth court public defender in Simpson County.

Diaz says Chancery Judge Larry Buffington called him up and asked him to take the part-time position.

Diaz will also qualify for time toward state retirement. He said he “lacked a little bit of time” to qualify for full retirement.

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Diaz is a former member of the Legislature as well as serving on the state Court of Appeals and the Mississippi Supreme Court.

He was cleared of any wrongdoing in the Paul Minor judicial bribery trial, but lost the election last year to keep his Supreme Court seat.

The job in Simpson county pays $400 a month.

Buffington says he needed someone for the job and Diaz needed a job.