Crime

Former lawmaker Thad Viers no longer in prison

From Staff Reports

Thad Viers who was jailed on federal money laundering charges late in 2016, is out of custody.

Viers, 38, was sentenced to serve 37 months in prison and to pay a $875,000 fine in October 2015 after he pleaded guilty to federal money laundering charges. Viers, once considered the frontrunner for the 7th Congressional District seat, was also set to be on supervised release for three years.

On Tuesday, Viers made posts on social media celebrating his release from a prison in Hopewell, Va. Prison officials told the Charleston Post & courier that Viers was being transferred to a halfway house.

“Experienced technical difficulties past year ... (social media use was frowned upon by establishment) ... Please stand by ... Coming back to life at 12:00PM E.S.T today, January 10, 2017. Stay tuned,” said Viers in a Facebook post.

Viers was disbarred for actions connected to a 2012 case involving the alleged harassment of an ex-girlfriend and the federal money laundering case.

In 2014, a federal grand jury indicted Viers on multiple felony charges, including money laundering and making false statements to the IRS.

“I love South Carolina,” he said at the time of his sentencing. “I’m a proud American and I’m ashamed of what I’ve done. ... I was wrong. Period.”

Viers choked up while reading an apology in court.

“As a lawyer, I should have known better,” he said. “As a man, I must take responsibility for my actions.”

Viers will be able to apply for a law license again, but must complete his supervised release from prison first.

The State contributed to this report.

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