Trial set in ex-Commissioner Gary Pierce's bribery case

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Gary Pierce. (Source: Gary Pierce. (Source:

A new trial date for former Arizona Corporation Commission Gary Pierce and three others who are charged in what prosecutors say was a bribery scheme aimed at benefiting a water company owner.

Pierce, his wife Sherry, water company owner George Johnson and lobbyist Jim Norton were originally set to be tried Aug. 2, but their trial date has since been moved to Oct. 3.

[ORIGINAL STORY: Ex-AZ Corp. Commissioner, owner of Johnson Utilities indicted on bribery charges]

[ASSOCIATED PRESS: Former Arizona utility regulator indicted on bribery charges]

They pleaded not guilty to bribery and fraud charges.

Prosecutors say Johnson funneled $31,000 through Norton to Pierce and his wife for favorable treatment in a rate case being decided by the commission.

[READ MORE: Johnson Utilities faces allegations from ADEQ after E. coli scare]

Prosecutors say Pierce also was the intended recipient of a $350,000 property that was supposed to be paid for by Johnson, though it's unknown if the real estate deal was in fact completed.

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