Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Department of Justice
Acting United States Attorney Gregg L. Sullivan Eastern District of Tennessee
BLUFF CITY COUPLE PLEADS GUILTY TO FEDERAL OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE CHARGES
GREENEVILLE, Tenn--Ronald W. Abram, Jr., 46, and Carol Hurst Abram, 45, both of Bluff City, Tenn., entered a plea of guilty on July 13, 2010, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee at Greeneville, to obstructing the due administration of justice. Sentencing has been set for November 29, 2010, at 9:00 a.m., in United States District Court in Greeneville. Pursuant to a plea agreement with the United States, both Ronald Abram and Carol Abram face a sentencing range of six to twelve months in prison, a fine not to exceed $250,000; supervised release for one year, forfeiture and restitution as ordered by the court.
The Abrams are the parents of Ronald William “Will” Abram, III., who was a Marine stationed at Kaneohe Bay Marine Base in Honolulu, Hawaii. Will Abram and eight other Marines stole many items which belonged to the United States Marine Corps, including weapons, equipment, ammunition and controlled military technology. The Marine ring sold eight pairs of Night Vision Goggles on the internet to prohibited buyers in Hong Kong, Poland, and Japan. Will Abram was dishonorably discharged from the United States Marine Corps and recently pled guilty in federal court in Honolulu to conspiring to sell controlled military technology and unlawful disposition of a firearm which was stolen from the United States Marine Corps. Will Abram has remained in federal custody in Honolulu since his arrest on October 29, 2008 and he is scheduled to be sentenced in federal court in Honolulu on October 25, 2010.
Ronald and Carol Abram pled guilty to obstructing the investigation and prosecution of Will Abram by directing others to destroy and conceal stolen military property, providing false and misleading information to law enforcement officers, by concealing the existence and location of stolen military property, and by pawning and later redeeming a laser firearm attachment which lawfully belonged to the United States. At the times charged, the Abrams were aware of the pending charges against their son and actively concealed evidence of his crimes.
Acting United States Attorney Gregg L. Sullivan commended the federal, state, and local law enforcement officers which made the prosecution a success. “This investigation began when the Cybercrimes Unit of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Section of the Department of Homeland Security noticed the sale of expensive military gear on the internet. Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Marine Corps, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and the Bluff City Fire Department and Police Department worked together to recover more than sixty stolen items. Many of the stolen items are cutting-edge technology, needed by our Armed Forces to defend the United States in the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters. We will remain vigilant in our prosecution of those who threaten the security of the United States.”
Helen Smith, Assistant United States Attorney represented the United States.