Former Sheriff's Uncle Pleads Guilty

Former Sheriff's Uncle Pleads Guilty | Robert Arnold, Rutherford County Sheriff, John Vanderveer, Joe Russell, Murfreesboro news, JailCigs, indicted, federal court

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.