News Column

Ex-mayor pleads guilty to lying to federal investigators

May 15, 2014

By Andrea Lannom, Charleston Daily Mail, W.Va.

May 15--Former Williamson Mayor Darrin McCormick pleaded guilty Wednesday to lying to federal investigators looking into suspicious banking practices of a contract-labor company's employees.

McCormick, 50, appeared in federal court on his single-count information, charging him with making false statements to the FBI and IRS. He could face up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced Aug. 28.

According to court documents, McCormick served as a branch manager at the Bank of Mingo since at least 2008.

While he was working at the bank, investigators were looking into a structuring scheme in Aracoma Contracting, which had an account at the bank.

In this scheme, the company is alleged to have produced cash transactions of $10,000 or less to avoid the bank's reporting requirements to the IRS and to hide the full amount of its assets. The company later received three years' probation and was ordered to pay $3 million in restitution and forfeit $405,000 for its role in the scheme.

According to court documents, federal investigators interviewed McCormick asking him whether he was aware of multiple Aracoma employees coming in to withdraw cash that would indicate the structuring scheme.

In Wednesday's hearing, McCormick said he didn't at the time employees were making the transactions that it was a structuring scheme.

However, he said when investigators interviewed him about the possible scheme, he had learned about it and lied saying he was never aware of multiple Aracoma employees simultaneously withdrawing cash.

U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver released McCormick on a $10,000 unsecured bond and allowed him to travel to Pike County, Ky. while he continues to search for another job.


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Source: Charleston Daily Mail (WV)

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