Three More Defendants Sentenced In Logan Arson Ring
Joint Federal and State Investigation Results in 25 Years Of Prison Time For Million-Dollar Insurance Scam
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Three more participants in a Logan County arson scheme were sentenced to prison, United States Attorney Booth Goodwin announced today. On Wednesday, Guy R. Miller, Jr., 40, of Logan, was sentenced to six years and three months in prison for his role in facilitating the February 1, 2012 burning of a former law office building located at 111 Stratton Street in downtown Logan. Miller recruited Michael D. Williams, 44, of Logan to spread approximately fifteen gallons of gasoline throughout the first floor of the building and ignite the fire. Williams spread so much gasoline that the fumes accumulated in the ceiling causing a dangerous explosion. The explosion was caught on the Logan County Courthouse video security system. Williams received a reduced sentence of 32 months in prison on Thursday as a result of his cooperation. Shawn C. Simon, 41, of Charleston, drove the getaway car for Miller and Williams and was sentenced Thursday to a term of 22 months in prison for destroying the digital video recorder from the neighboring restaurant, the 317 Steakhouse, operated by co-conspirator James Gregory Glick, 44, of Logan. The Main Street side security cameras for the restaurant captured Miller, Simon and Williams fleeing the scene after passing through a law office with doors that opened onto Main Street and Stratton Street. Simon admitted that he destroyed the video recorder shortly after the fire and threw it into the Kanawha River to conceal the evidence.
The scheme was initially hatched by Glick and another co-conspirator to collect insurance proceeds. In January of 2012, Glick bought the commercial building for $50,000. He then worked with an insurance agent and co-conspirator, William Jamey Thompson, 45, of Chapmanville, to obtain an inflated insurance policy from General Star Indemnity Company (“General Star”) providing $1 million in coverage. Thompson received $50,000 for his part in fraudulently obtaining insurance coverage.
While Glick was out of town during the early morning hours of February 1, 2012, Miller orchestrated the burning of the structure with Williams and Simon.
Without sufficient evidence of the arson, General Star paid Glick the $1,010,000 insurance policy proceeds in May of 2012, and Glick began sharing the money with his co-conspirators. In June of 2013, criminal investigators from the Internal Revenue Service, working with the West Virginia State Police, seized the remaining $450,000 in fraud proceeds from accounts controlled by Glick. Over the course of the next six weeks, the agents developed cooperating witnesses, who obtained audio and video recordings of efforts by Glick to obstruct the federal grand jury investigation by paying Miller $8,000 to provide false testimony if he was called as a witness.
Last week Glick received a sentence of more than 7 years for his role in the conspiracy and Thompson received a term of imprisonment of five years.
In addition to the $1,010,000 restitution order to repay General Star, the Court also ordered all defendants to reimburse the City of Logan $3,900 for emergency personnel response costs.
In March, Philip Wayne Workman, 36, of Logan was sentenced to prison for 27 months for his efforts to obstruct the arson investigation by conducting staged consensual recordings in an effort to frame innocent individuals.
The West Virginia State Police, West Virginia State Fire Marshal’s Office and the IRS Criminal Investigation Division conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Ryan is in charge of the prosecution