Former SC State trustee guilty on 29 charges - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

Former SC State trustee guilty on 29 charges

Former SC State trustee guilty on 29 charges

Posted: Updated:
Former South Carolina State University trustee Jonathan Pinson has been found guilty of more than two dozen charges in a federal corruption case.

A jury returned the verdict Thursday.

The jury considered 45 counts charging Pinson with various violations of federal law, including: conspiracy, theft of federal funds, mail fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, making false statements, extortion under color of law and state law bribery.

The indictment alleged that Pinson used his position as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of South Carolina State University to commit those illegal acts.

The jury considered evidence that the former Chairman engaged in four different schemes.

One scheme revolved around the 2011 homecoming concert at South Carolina State University and his efforts to steer the concert promotion contract to his close friend and former South Carolina State roommate, Eric Robinson, in exchange for a kickback.
Other schemes included his theft of government funds earmarked for a diaper plant in Marion County.

According to a release, evidence showed that proceeds from the grant, intended to create jobs in rural Marion County, were instead pocketed by Mr. Pinson and his associates, Lance Wright, Tony Williams, and Phil Mims.

Pinson's three associates all plead guilty to charges related to the fraud.

Pinson was also convicted of theft of government funds received from a $10,000,000 stimulus grant intended for the Village at Rivers Edge development in Columbia, South Carolina.

In the final scheme, Pinson again used his position as to influence SC State officials to purchase land known as “Sportsman’s Retreat”. The seller of the property, Richard Zahn, Pinson's business partner, testified that he agreed to pay a kickback to Pinson in the form of a new Porsche Cayenne, an SUV valued at approximately $90,000.

During the two and one-half week trial, the Government called twenty witnesses, introduced approximately 200 exhibits and played 118 secretly recorded telephone calls. The calls were from July 21 to November 20, 2011.

Jonathan Pinson will be sentenced at a later date.

His Co-defendant, Eric Robinson, was acquitted of 7 counts.
  • Charleston police looking for a Family Dollar soap thief!

    Charleston police looking for a Family Dollar soap thief!

    Friday, August 22 2014 3:30 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:30:52 GMT
    On Friday, August 22nd, Charleston police say a man forcefully entered the Family Dollar at 1015 King St and stole numerous soap products. If anyone has information about the suspect pictured, you're asked to call Crime Stoppers at 554-1111 or Consolidated Dispatch at 743-7200 and ask for the on-call Charleston Police detective.
    On Friday, August 22nd, Charleston police say a man forcefully entered the Family Dollar at 1015 King St and stole numerous soap products. If anyone has information about the suspect pictured, you're asked to call Crime Stoppers at 554-1111 or Consolidated Dispatch at 743-7200 and ask for the on-call Charleston Police detective.
  • UPDATE: SWAT, Colleton County Deputies arrest suspect following stand-off

    UPDATE: SWAT, Colleton County Deputies arrest suspect following stand-off

    Friday, August 22 2014 3:27 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:27:02 GMT
    Law enforcement in Colleton County are in a stand-off with a suspect after trying to serve a warrant.According to the Colleton County Sheriff's Office, deputies responded to a home on Rum Gully Road in Islandton about 3:50 Thursday afternoon to serve an order of detention. After deputies met with a person on-scene that they believe the order of detention was intended, the subject pulled a rifle on deputies.SWAT and members of the Colleton County Sheriff's Office have the area surrounded.This ...
    Law enforcement in Colleton County are in a stand-off with a suspect after trying to serve a warrant.According to the Colleton County Sheriff's Office, deputies responded to a home on Rum Gully Road in Islandton about 3:50 Thursday afternoon to serve an order of detention. After deputies met with a person on-scene that they believe the order of detention was intended, the subject pulled a rifle on deputies.SWAT and members of the Colleton County Sheriff's Office have the area surrounded.This ...
  • Black leaders want voice in SC beach safety plans

    Black leaders want voice in SC beach safety plans

    Friday, August 22 2014 12:43 PM EDT2014-08-22 16:43:11 GMT
    Black leaders say they want a voice in plans to ensure safety in the Myrtle Beach area over the Memorial Day weekend. Myrtle Beach NAACP president Mickey James and other leaders say they are concerned about more than just the Memorial Day holiday weekend. They say there needs to be more security year-round. The leaders told local media outlets at a news conference Thursday that black leaders are not being involved enough in plans to improve safety. Three people died and seven were injured in ...
    Black leaders say they want a voice in plans to ensure safety in the Myrtle Beach area over the Memorial Day weekend. Myrtle Beach NAACP president Mickey James and other leaders say they are concerned about more than just the Memorial Day holiday weekend. They say there needs to be more security year-round. The leaders told local media outlets at a news conference Thursday that black leaders are not being involved enough in plans to improve safety. Three people died and seven were injured in ...
Powered by WorldNow

210 W. Coleman Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Telephone: 843.216.4875
Fax: 843.881.3410
Email: news@wcbd.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.