Alabama Sheriff Facing 30 Years Behind Bars for Faking $200k Loans to Pay Gambling Debts

3 weeks ago
Alabama Sheriff Facing 30 Years Behind Bars for Faking $200k Loans to Pay Gambling Debts
09:12
01 Nov

An Alabama sheriff who resigned facing corruption charges has pleaded guilty to falsifying loans of almost $200,000 in order to pay off gambling debts.

William Ray Norris, 44, the former Clarke County sheriff, applied for multiple commercial loans – totalling more than $192,000 – at Town Country National Bank between November 2017 and June 2020.

Norris, who pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to a federally insured institution, claimed the loans would be used to finance office supplies and food for prisoners.

Instead, the indictment against Norris in an Alabama court revealed that he used the money for “overdrawn personal accounts, gambling expenses, and other personal expenses.”

Norris was also accused of using a chunk of a $75,000 loan from the same bank to pay off $25k of personal loans taken out by him and his wife at the same bank.

His defence attorney, Gordon G. Armstrong, tried to downplay Norris’ crimes, telling reporters:

“He’d done business with this bank for a long time, knew the banker, knew the president of the bank and got a little careless with some of the paperwork.”

Armstrong added:

“But it’s all been paid back. So it’s really a victimless crime at this point.”
The prosecution clearly disagree, and the ex-sheriff is looking at a prison term of up to 30 years, with three years of supervised release, and $1 million fine, according to the terms of his plea deal.

Norris had already handed in his Sheriff’s badge after being accused of “crimes involving moral turpitude,” but his impeachment proceedings for corruption were dropped following his resignation.

Alabama Attorney General, Steve Marshall, said at the time:

“Sheriff Norris could no longer be trusted as a public servant or as a law enforcement official, and his resignation should be a welcome relief to the public.”

Norris’ case is just the latest involving police officials and gambling, with Nassau County P.D. detective, Hector Rosario, recently accused of accepting money from the Bonanno crime family, in exchange for arranging police raids on competing gambling dens.

Further afield, Macau authorities earlier this year accused a deputy sergeant of accepting bribes from the boss of a VIP gambling establishment in exchange for information about police movements.


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Andrew from Edinburgh, Scotland, is a professional journalist, international-titled chess master, and avid poker player.Read more

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