A woman convicted of embezzlement and later pardoned by Gov. Haley Barbour is now the finance manager of the private run East Mississippi Correctional Facility in Meridian.

Jessie Octavia Houston has worked at the private prison since July 2012.

A federal lawsuit was recently filed over conditions at East Mississippi Correctional Facility, which houses many suffering from mental illness. The lawsuit calls the prison “barbaric” and said inmates are beaten, exploited and mistreated by gangs and others.

Houston couldn’t be reached for comment. A message was left on her voicemail at East Mississippi Correctional Facility.

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