On Wednesday, April 10, 2024, News19 reported that longtime Lauderdale County Circuit Judge Gil Self pleaded not guilty to charges related to alleged misuse of his office and perjury.

Judge Self, who has served as a circuit judge in Lauderdale County for over 20 years, entered a not guilty plea on Monday to 16 counts of using his position for personal gain. The charges stem from accusations that between April 2020 and February 2023, Self improperly spent over $50,000 in court funds on personal travel and items without approval.

According to court documents, Judge Self is also accused of hiring his son for a $50,000 job in the Lauderdale County law library without getting permission. Prosecutors added that Self lied to a grand jury about receiving authorization for this hiring.

The 61-year-old judge issued a statement in January claiming he made “honest but correctable mistakes” in his handling of two court bank accounts. However, the State Attorney General’s office has argued the evidence outlined the alleged offenses.

This month, Circuit Judge Tim Jolley denied a request from Self’s defense attorneys seeking more specific details on the perjury charge. Lawyers for the accused had argued the indictment lacked clarity on what statements were allegedly false and who had approved hiring his son.

If convicted, Judge Self faces possible removal from office as Alabama state law prohibits indicted judges from continuing to serve, though he remains on the bench receiving his biweekly salary while the legal process plays out.



Source: News19