Vester Ray Bassham, 46, of Gautier was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Louis Guirola, Jr. to five months in federal prison for wire fraud in connection with the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis said Thursday.

Bassham knowingly devised and carried out a scheme to defraud the Gulf Coast Claims Facility established by BP Exploration and Production, Inc. to administer, process, and settle certain claims of individuals and businesses that had been impacted by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

After his release from prison, he’ll also serve five months home confinement with electronic monitoring and three years of supervised release.

Bassham was also ordered to pay restitution of $26,000.

Bassham claimed he lost earnings and profits and work hours as an electrician providing services for Torguson Contruction, LLC, in Jackson County as a result of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

He received the money in 2010 and 2011. The money was wired to a bank account in Biloxi.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Bassham was not an electrician and there is no known company by the name of Torguson Contruction, LLC.

He pleaded guilty in December.


Leave a Reply