ASHEVILLE — A continuance was granted for the federal trial for Diane McKinney, bookkeeper for Kent Covington’s businesses, Diverse Corporate Technologies (DCT) and Integrity Marble. McKinny has been charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Federal prosecutors accuse Covington and McKinny of obtaining more than six months of government paid labor by the employees collecting unemployment.
Diane McKinny pled not guilty on June 18. Last week Charles McKeller, defense attorney for Diane McKinny filed a motion for continuance stating he had 125,000 pages of discovery to review and 30 hours of video. The motion acknowledged that the US Attorney had informed him more discovery was forthcoming. The motion leaves the rescheduling of the court date to the Court. A ruling is expected before November 7th.
Covington requested a jury trial that was originally scheduled for September 4, 2018. He also pled not guilty in June. However, since then Covington has been negotiating a plea deal with the federal prosecutors. The former deadline for the plea deal originally was October 19 but the Judge extended the deadline for the working out the final details until October 26.
Assistant United States District Attorney Daniel Bradley joined in the motion for a continuance.
Indictments allege Covington used his position of authority within the Word of Faith Fellowship church community to coerce employees into working full-time or nearly full-time for the company, even though, according to federal prosecutors, they had officially been laid off and placed on unemployment.
Wire fraud affecting a financial institution carries a maximum prison term of 30 years and a maximum fine of $1 million.extend plea deal to 10 26