FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WBTW) – A former Florence County Sheriff’s Office lieutenant has been arrested after allegedly accepting bribes from “associates” of a gambling organization.
The South Carolina Attorney General’s Office announced the arrest of former Florence County Sheriff’s Lieutenant Mark Edward Fuleihan, 48, Thursday. He was arrested by SLED and Homeland Security agents at the sheriff’s office.
Florence County Interim Sheriff William Barnes dismissed Fuleihan from his role at lieutenant prior to his arrest.
The investigation began “with a request from the Florence County Sheriff’s Office after it received information about Fuleihan’s alleged involvement in illegal gaming,” the SCAG’s office says.
The warrant for Flueihan says:
“Between April 2017 and March 2020, Special Agents with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) conducted an investigation regarding public corruption within an illegal gambling organization operating in Florence County, SC. The investigation identified multiple individuals associated to the gambling organization to include the defendant, Mark Edward FULEIHAN. FULEIHAN was confirmed to be an active sworn law enforcement officer with the Florence County Sheriff’s Office at the time of the investigation. Statements by multiple Sources of Information (SOI) revealed first-hand knowledge of FULEIHAN accepting monetary bribes between 2013 and 2017 from associates of the gambling organization. SOI confirmed the bribes were paid to FULEIHAN in exchange for information/services used to facilitate the operation of the illegal gambling organization and to avoid detection from other local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. SLED also utilized cellular telephone toll reports during the investigation to confirm FULEIHAN’S continued communication with members of the gambling organization. The telephone reports revealed continued communication patterns between FULEIHAN and the gambling organization on specific dates/times SLED was conducting enforcement action against the gambling organization, between 2018 and 2020.”
This type of crime is a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. A person who is convicted of this offense is “permanently disqualified from being a public official or a public member.”