Local News

Former U.S. Attorney Pleads Guilty To Money Laundering

Posted November 2, 2006 4:50 a.m. EST

— Sam Currin, who previously served as a federal prosecutor and state judge, was on the other side of the courtroom Thursday, pleading guilty to money laundering and obstruction of justice charges.

Currin, 57, of Raleigh, admitted that he laundered about $1.4 million in proceeds from a securities fraud scheme run by a spam e-mail company. He also acknowledged that he later lied to a grand jury that began investigating the scheme and that he didn't report information on his tax return.

A group that included one of Currin's legal clients engaged in a scheme to manipulate the stock prices of several publicly traded companies through the use of spam e-mail, mass unsolicited faxes, Internet search optimization and voice mail broadcasting, prosecutors said. The scheme garnered millions, and prosecutors said Currin received more than $240,000 for his involvement.

Both Currin and his attorney declined to comment after the court hearing.

Currin was the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, which covers 44 counties from Raleigh eastward, from 1981 to 1987 and was a Superior Court judge from 1987 to 1990. He has been in private law practice since then and has been a leading figure in the state Republican Party.

The charges carry a maximum sentence of 43 years in prison and about $1 million in fines, although authorities said Currin likely will get far less jail time.

No sentencing date has been set.