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March 7th, 2014
08:35 PM ET

The most corrupt town in America?

Hampton, Florida (CNN) - How off-the-charts corrupt do you have to be to capture somebody's attention in the Sunshine State?

You can lay claim to a 1,260-foot stretch of busy highway a mile outside of town and set up one of the nation's most notorious speed traps. You can use the ticket money to build up a mighty police force - an officer for every 25 people in town - and, residents say, let drugs run rampant while your cops sit out by the highway on lawn chairs, pointing radar guns at everybody who passes by.

Of course, none of those things are illegal. But when you lose track of the money and the mayor gets caught up in an oxy-dealing sting, that's when the politicians at the state Capitol in Tallahassee take notice.

Now they want this city gone, and the sooner the better.

A state audit of Hampton's books, released last month, reads like a primer on municipal malfeasance. It found 31 instances in which local rules or state or federal laws were violated in ways large and small.

Read the audit (PDF)

Somewhere along the way, the place became more than just a speed trap. Some say the ticket money corrupted Hampton, making it the dirtiest little town in Florida.

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