Paul Holliday acquitted of embezzlement charges

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Paul Bradley Holliday, 48, of Poplarville, was acquitted of three counts of embezzlement during a trial by jury on Dec. 13 in Pearl River County Circuit Court.
Holliday was indicted in October 2015 by a Pearl River County Grand Jury after an investigation by the Mississippi Attorney General’s Public Integrity Division was conducted, previous coverage states.
The charges stemmed from a complaint filed by Holliday’s uncle, Lawrence Holliday, who accused Paul Holliday of embezzling $268,965 while working for Holliday Construction, LLC from 2006 to 2009, according to previous coverage.
Fifteenth Circuit Court Judge Prentiss Harrell presided over the trial where a jury of his peers found Paul Holliday not guilty on all three counts, court documents state.
“It was a fair trial,” Harrell said.
The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Larry Baker and Paul Holliday was defended by K.C. Hightower and Bryan Sawyers, according to court documents.
Paul Holliday said the charges came about after disputes with Lawrence Holliday concerning a profit sharing deal.
Paul Holliday said he worked for his uncle’s company between 1997 and 2010 and made several business deals with Scott Holliday, Lawrence Holliday’s son, who owns part of the business.
As a result of that partnership, “there is still a substantial amount of money owed to me this day,” Paul Holliday said.
Lawrence Holliday denied those claims and said he was paying his nephew $100,000 a year and gave him access to the company checkbook.
“There were checks written…I guess [the jury] thought that he was entitled to that,” Lawrence Holliday said, who maintains that Paul Holliday embezzled the funds.

During the four years in question, Lawrence Holliday said his nephew took home “right at a million dollars.”
Paul Holliday said he later left the company, starting his own construction business, Double H Contracting, LLC with his brother Michael Holliday and his father Hudson Holliday.
The two companies competed for contracts at Stennis Space Center he said, and when deals failed, the “trumped up embezzlement charges,” were pressed, Paul Holliday said. “I’m thankful that we had 12 jurors that saw through it.”
During two days of testimony, there were some “pretty heated moments in the courtroom,” Paul Holliday said, who didn’t testify during the trial.
“It’s unfortunate that my brother decided to use the state or the court system to try to drag my son through the mud,” Hudson Holliday said.
“It was no family dispute because of family, it just happened to be a dispute in the family,” Lawrence Holliday said.
“I’d like to thank all those folks that stood by me and didn’t treat me any differently through this whole ordeal,” Paul Holliday said. “It’ll make you have a different outlook on things. You have to have faith in the legal system and it worked.”
Despite the charges being dropped, Paul Holliday said the accusation is “always going to be out there,” though, it hasn’t affected his business.

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About Julia Arenstam

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