Hosemann Cites Actions by Developer Watkins

David Watkins
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Jackson, Miss.
The Mississippi secretary of state's office says it has found Jackson developer David Watkins took funds from a mall project and diverted it to a project to build a new police station in Meridian.

Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann Monday announced that Watkins and his company have been ordered to pay restitution of $587,084, plus legal interest and a civil penalty of $75,000.

Hosemann says Watkins and company also must pay administrative and investigative costs totaling $18,047.

Hosemann says Watkins diverted about a half million dollars in bond proceeds for the Metrocenter Mall project in Jackson to close the deal on the police station project.

Watkins' attorneys denied any wrongdoing while acknowledging the transfer of the money.

Watkins has 60 days to appeal the decision.