CHARLESTON, WV (WOAY) – United States Attorney Mike Stuart announced today that the federal grand jury which returned the original indictment against West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals Justice Allen H. Loughry II last month has today returned a superseding indictment. Loughry, 47, of Charleston, West Virginia, was charged on June 19, 2018, in a 22-count Indictment that was unsealed today. The new indictment adds an obstruction of justice count, in addition to the existing wire and mail fraud, false statements, and witness tampering offenses.
The new count charges that between December 4, 2017, and May 24, 2018, Loughry knowingly and corruptly endeavored to influence, obstruct, and impede the due administration of justice—a pending federal grand jury investigation the existence of which Loughry was well aware, according to the superseding indictment. The superseding indictment goes on to explain that Loughry allegedly obstructed justice by, among other things, deflecting attention away from his own misconduct and blaming others for improperly using Supreme Court funds and property; creating a false narrative about when a Cass Gilbert desk was moved to his home and under whose direction; using invoices not related to the transfer of a leather couch and the Cass Gilbert desk to his home in 2013 to buttress the false narrative he created, and repeating the false narrative to a Special Agent of the FBI in an interview on March 2, 2018.
“Today, a federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment against West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals Justice Allen Loughry,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. “The new indictment adds another very serious charge — obstruction of justice — which, in addition to the charges included in the original indictment, expose Loughry to a possible sentence of 405 years in prison. It’s very disappointing that a former Chief Justice of the highest court in the State of West Virginia would engage in such egregious conduct. Obstruction of justice is one of the most serious of offenses and for that conduct to be conducted by a Supreme Court Justice is, frankly, just plain stupefying.”
The 23-count Indictment charges Loughry with sixteen counts of mail fraud (Counts 2, 3, 4-17), which carry a penalty of up to 20 years for each count; two counts of wire fraud (Counts 1 and 19), which carry a penalty of up to 20 years for each count; three counts of making false statements to a federal agent (Counts 21-23), which carry a penalty of up to 5 years for each count; one count of witness tampering (Count 18), which carries a penalty of up to 20 years; and the new charge in Count 20 for obstruction of justice, which carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison. If convicted on all counts in the Indictment, Loughry faces a possible sentence of up to 405 years in prison, a fine of $5.75 million, and a term of supervised release of up to 3 years.
Please note: An Indictment is merely an allegation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.