The four-count indictment alleges that Hooks was paid at least $5,000 by Tim Willis, who later became an undercover operative for the FBI in the Tennessee Waltz political corruption investigation. Willis billed juvenile court for $60,364 for public relations in 2001 and paid some of the money to Hooks.
The indictment says Hooks, assisted by Willis, submitted false invoices through Darrell Catron to the Juvenile Court Clerk's office. Catron has pleaded guilty to federal charges but has not been sentenced. When Catron made his plea, prosecutors referred to an unnamed contractor who apparently was Hooks.
Hooks is also charged with making a false entry in a document on April 17, 2003, "with the intent to impede the investigation of a matter" within federal jurisdiction. A fourth count charges him with making a false statement to FBI agents last month.
The indictment makes no mention of E-Cycle, the fictitious company set up by the FBI in Tennessee Waltz. Prosecutors have said the Tennessee Waltz investigation grew out of an investigation of Willis and the juvenile court clerk at that time, Shep Wilbun. Willis testified earlier this month against former state senator Roscoe Dixon, who was convicted.
Hooks is the son of former Memphis City Council member Janet Hooks and Shelby County Commissioner Michael Hooks Sr., who was indicted last year on two counts in the Tennessee Waltz investigation. The trial of Hooks Sr. is pending. -- John Branston