Local News

6 Plead Guilty in Crop Insurance Scheme

Posted February 13, 2008 12:48 p.m. EST

— Six men pleaded guilty in federal court this weein connection with a crop insurance and money-laundering scheme.

The U.S. Department of Justice said the men – Roland D. McCoy Jr., Joseph Edward Williams, of Zebulon; Robert Thomas Veasey, of Durham; David C. Harrison, of Snow Hilll; William Earl Dawson, of Stantonsburg, and his son, Robert Lemuel Dawson, also of Stantonburg – were part of a larger scheme to defraud insurance companies of funds ultimately reimbursed by the United States government and to launder the proceeds of the underlying fraud.

Conspiracy to launder money is punishable by up to 20 years in prison, a fine of $500,000 or twice the value of funds involved in the offense, whichever is more, and up to three years of supervised release.

Prosecutors also said Williams, William Dawson and Robert Dawson worked with a Wilson County tobacco broker to sell their crop under different names to disguise true production.

Conspiracy is punishable by up to five years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000 and up to three years of supervised release.

The men pleaded guilty Monday. Sentencing dates, however, have not been set.