Alex Murdaugh faces new indictments alleging money laundering, theft from brother, law firm
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - Former Lowcountry attorney Alex Murdaugh faces new indictments, bringing the total number of charges against him to 90, the state’s attorney general announced Friday morning.
A state grand jury handed down indictments against Murdaugh and two others, Spencer Anwan Roberts and Jerry K. Rivers, Attorney General Alan Wilson said.
Murdaugh faces four counts of obtaining a signature or property by false pretenses value $10,000 or more; two counts of money laundering value $20,000 - $100,000; one count of money laundering value $100,000 or more; two counts of computer crime value more than $10,000.
Roberts was indicted for one count of obtaining a signature or property by false pretenses value $10,000 or more; one count of money laundering value $20,000 - $100,000; one count of computer crime value more than $10,000; and one count of insurance fraud. The Attorney General’s Office argued last week that Roberts may have received checks from Murdaugh. His lawyers deny his charges have anything to do with Murdaugh.
Rivers was indicted for obstruction of justice. He is accused of removing a cellphone from a scene the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division was searching last week. Bond was granted in the sum of $150,000 and Rivers is required to submit to GPS monitoring for 90 days.
The indictments allege Murdaugh took checks totaling more than $175,000 that were supposed to go to his former law firm, Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth, and Detrick, P.A. Murdaugh is then accused of depositing those checks into a separate bank account he controlled from which he could launder those checks, in part, “for personal use of himself and his family.”
Another indictment alleges Murdaugh had his law firm’s accounting office void a check for $121,358.63 that should have gone to his brother and recut the check to himself, and that he then deposited that check and converted the funds to his personal use.
The crimes charged in the indictments carry the following penalties upon conviction:
- Obstruction of Justice: Up to 10 years in prison
- Obtaining Signature or Property by False Pretenses, Value $10,000 (a felony): Up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine up to $500
- Money Laundering, Value $20,000 - $100,000 (a felony): Up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine up to $250,000 or twice the value of the transactions, whichever is greater
- Money Laundering, Value More Than $100,000 (a felony): Up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine up to $250,000 or twice the amount at issue
- Computer Crime, Value More Than $10,000 (a felony): Up to 5 years in prison and/or a fine up to $50,000
- Insurance Fraud, Value More Than $10,000 but less than $50,000 (a felony): Up to 5 years in prison and/or a fine up to $50,000
Altogether, through 18 indictments containing 90 charges against Murdaugh, the State Grand Jury has indicted Murdaugh for schemes to defraud victims of $8,789,447.77.
The State Grand Jury investigation is being conducted by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the United States Attorney’s Office.
The case will be prosecuted by The South Carolina Attorney General’s Office.
Murdaugh also is charged with two counts of murder in the June 7, 2021, deaths of his wife and son, 52-year-old Maggie Murdaugh and 22-year-old Paul Murdaugh. The murder trial is expected to be held in January.
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