With the first criminal trial tied to the ‘Murdaugh Murders’ crime and corruption saga nearing a verdict, this week’s episode once again took inventory of the proceedings in Charleston, South Carolina – raising questions about a potential broader conspiracy tied to the alleged financial crimes of disgraced banker Russell Laffitte.
Laffitte – a key cog in the alleged financial scheming of disbarred attorney/ accused killer Alex Murdaugh – had another difficult week in court as multiple witnesses called by the defense sounded more like government witnesses after being pressed by prosecutors on cross-examination.
(Click to view)
This week’s episode was filmed prior to Laffitte taking the stand in his own defense on Friday afternoon – and prior to the playing of a recording in which bank attorney Trenholm Walker advised board members of Palmetto State Bank (PSB) to enter into at least one of the transactions which has resulted in federal charges against Laffitte.
Still, there was still plenty to break down from the proceedings in U.S. district court.
Laffite’s attorneys have strongly implied that evidence of a “broader conspiracy” would exonerate their client. While their attempts to prove this conspiracy in court have not yielded much success, questions still swirled this week around the actions of PSB executives and board members in the weeks surrounding their discovery of Murdaugh’s fraud.
And Russell Laffitte’s alleged enabling of it …
On August 25, 2021 – two-and-a-half weeks after Norris Laffitte sounded the alarm about PSB’s exposure to Murdaugh – the bank submitted a “notice of exempt offering of securities” to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) – informing regulators of $20 million of new debt sold to investors.
It should be emphasized that debt financing is a normal fundraising mechanism – but if bank board members knew more than they disclosed to investors, they could face criminal and civil penalties.
Since U.S. district court judge Richard Gergel has (rightfully, in my estimation) blocked attempts to broaden the scope of Laffitte’s trial, for now you’ll have to count on us to keep digging into potential evidence of a broader conspiracy outside of the courtroom.
We will also continue to provide updates as the biggest court case tied to this saga – Alex Murdaugh’s looming double homicide trial in Colleton County, S.C. – draws closer. This week saw some movement in that case, as Murdaugh’s attorneys appear to have finally settled on his alibi ahead of the upcoming proceedings.
On the political front, with the midterm elections now in the rearview mirror – jockeying for primary election position in 2024 has begun. While Democrats in South Carolina largely sat out this month’s elections, their turnout nationally was enough to stymie an anticipated red wave.
Who stands to benefit from the Trump-DeSantis spat? None other than former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley, who is still viewed by many in the GOP establishment as the party’s best chance to retake the White House in 2024.
While FITSNews will be providing coverage of the end of Laffite’s trial early next week, we will be spending next Friday with our families following the Thanksgiving holiday – and as a result won’t be producing this program.
We appreciate our audience’s support more than we can adequately express – and hope you and your families have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
(Via: Coleman Rojhan)
Dylan Nolan is the director of special projects at FITSNews. He graduated from the Darla Moore school of business in 2021 with an accounting degree. Dylan primarily covers education when he isn’t producing video content. Got a tip or story idea for Dylan? Email him here. You can also engage him socially @DNolan2000.
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