Federal judge refuses to throw out prescription drug case

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) – A federal judge has decided he will not throw out an indictment in a prescription drug case.

U.S. District Judge Sul Ozerden denied a defense attorney’s claim that a prosecutor’s statements and a Sun Herald news report have prejudiced his client’s case.

In an order signed Wednesday, Ozerden said the indictment against 56-year-old Sherrie Box Bennett, of Vancleave, will not be quashed.

The 11-count indictment alleges Bennett, who is a nurse, and her husband, 58-year-old Jerry Dean Bennett, dispensed and distributed prescription drugs outside the scope of professional practice in Harrison County and elsewhere from sometime in 2010 through May 2013.

Sherrie Bennett also is accused of writing illegal prescriptions for herself, her husband and numerous other relatives.