. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Watt Pleads Guilty

WASHINGTON () -- In a dramatic scale-down of the original charges, former Interior Secretary James Watt on Tuesday pleaded guilty to a single misdemeanor count of attempting to inaccurately influence a grand jury investigating his lobbying for federal aid from the Housing and Urban Development Department after he left office.

Watt, 58, faces a maximum punishment of up to six months in jail and a $5,000 fine, which he agreed to pay in plea bargaining discussions with the government. This does not foreclose Watt's being sent to jail March 12, the date set by U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth for sentencing after completion of a probation report.