Former CEO of Palmetto State Bank Russell Laffitte was sentenced to 84 months in prison after being convicted of conspiring with Alex Murdaugh in a years-long scheme that totaled millions of dollars.
Laffitte was convicted of conspiring to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud and three counts of misapplication of bank funds in November 2022.
U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel sentenced Laffitte on Tuesday to 84 months in prison, plus he will have to pay $3.55 million in restitution, according to FOX Carolina.
An initial indictment states that Laffitte collected around $392,000 for his work as a personal representative for six clients of a “personal injury attorney at a law firm in Hampton, South Carolina.”
Prosecutors said that Laffitte transferred personal loans to both himself and Murdaugh from the six conservator accounts, and the funds were used for personal expenses.
Murdaugh killed his wife and son in an attempt to direct attention away from the 99 financial crimes charges he was facing, originating from 19 separate indictments, prosecutors said. The financial crimes charges total nearly $9 million.
Following Murdaugh’s guilty verdict, Laffitte filed a second motion for a new trial, stating that he’s innocent.
“On February 23, 2023, Mr. Murdaugh explicitly stated, for the first time in sworn testimony, that he did not participate in a conspiracy with Mr. Laffitte because Mr. Laffitte did not participate in the financial crimes,” the motion states. “Mr. Murdaugh took full responsibility for his own actions and testified that Mr. Laffitte did nothing wrong and did not have any knowledge of Mr. Murdaugh’s criminal activity.”
U.S. District Judge Richard M. Gergel denied the request for a new trial.
“Evidence offered during the Defendant’s trial established without question that Murdaugh is a serial liar and fraudster who stole from his clients and law partners,” Gergel wrote in April, denying the request. “He now stands convicted of the double homicide of his wife and son. It is difficult to imagine a less credible witness under these circumstances.”
Fox News’ Audrey Conklin contributed to this report.