Former Sheriff's Uncle Pleads Guilty

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The uncle of former Rutherford County Sheriff Robert Arnold pleads guilty in federal court for his part in the JailCigs case.

John Vanderveer pleaded guilty in a Nashville federal courtroom to one count of witness tampering Monday.

Arnold pleaded guilty on January 18th to wire fraud, honest services fraud and extortion. Russell entered a guilty plea just two days later to the same charges as Arnold.


Each count in which they entered guilty pleas could carry a 20-year prison sentence each and hefty fines. Sentencing will take place at a later time.

The trio was facing a 14-count indictment stemming from an unauthorized plan to sell e-cigarettes to Rutherford County jail inmates through a company co-owned by Russell and Vanderveer, in which Arnold invested.


From December 2013 to April 2015, when the media began reporting on the scheme, Arnold received $66,790 from JailCigs, Russell $52,234 and Vanderveer $49,545, according to the indictment.

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federal court, indicted, JailCigs, Joe Russell, John Vanderveer, Murfreesboro news, Robert Arnold, Rutherford County Sheriff
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