Former West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Allen Loughry sentenced to prison


    <p>Former West Virginia Supreme Court justice Allen Loughry was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison Wednesday. (Rob Cleland){/p}

    UPDATE, 4:10 p.m.

    Former West Virginia Supreme Court justice Allen Loughry was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison.

    Loughry also will have three years of supervised release along with a $10,000 fine.

    The former justice was sentenced in Charleston federal court. Below is video as Loughry came into the courthouse with his attorney, John Carr.

    Loughry resigned from the Supreme Court on Nov. 12, 2018, just as the West Virginia Senate was planning his impeachment trial after his conviction on 11 of 22 charges in federal court. The federal judge in the case denied two motions from Loughry’s defense, asking for a new trial. He did drop one of the convictions, a witness tampering charge.

    Loughry continues to face allegations that he violated the Judicial Code of Conduct.

    A spotlight on Loughry and the West Virginia Supreme Court was first shined in an Eyewitness News I-Team investigative story in November 2017 that revealed excessive spending at the court, including a nearly $32,000 couch in Loughry’s office.

    “I am fully aware of the seriousness of this matter on me and my family. I do not wish to minimize or trivialize this matter. This situation has changed my life and the life of my family forever.," Loughry said during the sentencing.

    In response, U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver said, “Except for the statement you’ve just given I have not seen evidence of remorse.”

    During the trial, Loughry also signed an agreement with the Judicial Investigation Commission where he will surrender his law license and never seek public office again.

    Loughry's attorney requested that Loughry be allowed to serve his sentence as close to Berkeley Springs, W.Va. as possible. Loughry must report to prison by 2 p.m. on April 5.

    "What I want folks to take from this is the justice system works. There are a lot of folks that don't have a great deal of confidence that justice works at the end of the day. It worked here and will work again. This is a decision of renewal for the people of West Virginia. Our West Virginia Supreme Court does work. We continue to investigate at this point but we are feeling very good that confidence is being restored," U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart said following the sentencing.

    More details on this developing story will be provided as they become available.


    ORIGINAL STORY:

    After months of continuances and efforts at trying to get a new trial, former West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Allen Loughry is set to be sentenced Wednesday on federal charges.

    The sentencing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. at the federal courthouse in Charleston.

    Loughry was convicted Oct. 12, 2018, on 11 charges in Charleston federal court after a nine-day trial. The former Supreme Court justice faced 22 federal charges - two counts of mail fraud, 17 counts of wire fraud, one count of witness tampering and two counts of false statements.

    He was found guilty on seven wire fraud charges, one mail fraud charge, one witness tampering charge and two false statement charges. He was found not guilty on nine wire fraud charges and one mail fraud charge. There was a hung jury on one wire fraud charge.

    On Jan. 11, the judge denied Loughry’s appeal for a new trial but dropped one of the 11 convictions, a witness tampering charge. The judge also recently denied a second motion for a new trial in which Loughry’s counsel contended he did not have an impartial jury.

    On his original conviction, Loughry had faced a possible sentence of 190 years in prison and a fine of $2.75 million.

    Loughry was convicted on a mail fraud charge for accepting a check from the Pound Institute in Washington, D.C., and wire fraud charges for buying fuel with a state credit card for a state vehicle that he was using for personal business and a witness tampering charge. He also was found guilty of lying to a federal agent.

    The former justice resigned from the West Virginia Supreme Court on Nov. 12, 2018, just a day before state lawmakers were scheduled to be in a special session to consider removing him from office.

    Loughry continues to face allegations that he violated the Judicial Code of Conduct.

    A spotlight on Loughry and the West Virginia Supreme Court was first shined in an Eyewitness News I-Team investigative story in November 2017 that revealed excessive spending at the court, including a nearly $32,000 couch in Loughry’s office.

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