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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Friday - September 26, 2003

Raleigh - United States Attorney Frank D. Whitney announced today the indictment of CRAIG IRA CLAPP, 44, of Enfield, N. C., on drug conspiracy, extortion, and perjury charges. A federal grand jury sitting in Greenville returned the indictment on September 10, 2003.

The five-count indictment charges CLAPP with conspiracy to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine (maximum penalty: 20 years imprisonment, three years supervised release, and $1,000,000 fine); two counts of extortion of money induced under color of official right (maximum penalty: 20 years imprisonment, three years supervised release, and $250,000 fine, per count); and two counts of making false declarations before a federal grand jury (maximum penalty: five years imprisonment, three years supervised release, and $250,000 fine, per count).

CLAPP, Chief of Police, of the Seaboard Police Department, was arrested today and had his initial appearance before U. S. Magistrate Judge William A. Webb in Raleigh. CLAPP was held without bond pending a detention hearing, which is scheduled for Wednesday, October 1, at 10:00 a.m., in Raleigh.

Investigation of the case was conducted by the federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) in "Operation High Resolve." Participating agencies were the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Assistant U. S. Attorney Eric Evenson is handling the case for the government.

An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government's burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. A trial date has not been scheduled.

News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney's web page at www.usdoj.gov/usao/nce within 48 hours of release.

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