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Press Release

Abingdon Man Sentenced on Bankruptcy Fraud Charge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Virginia
Defendant Hid Valuable Assets While Spending Large Sums at Casino

ABINGDON, Va. – An Abingdon man, who concealed bank accounts and other assets from a federal bankruptcy court during his Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, was sentenced yesterday to 12 months in federal prison and ordered to pay a $4,000 fine.

Ronald Eugene Lefler, 67, pled guilty in March 2020 to one count of bankruptcy fraud when he knowingly and fraudulently failed to disclose and otherwise concealed assets from the United States Trustee and from creditors in a pending bankruptcy case before the United States Bankruptcy Court.

According to court documents, on September 20, 2015, Lefler filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the Western District of Virginia and testified under oath that he had fully disclosed all known bank accounts within his control and that he had deposited all of his income into a “debtor-in-possession” bank account, a requirement under the bankruptcy proceedings.  Lefler also disclaimed, under oath, to not owning any other assets not otherwise reported, including other vehicles and watercraft.

A subsequent investigation determined that Lefler not only concealed assets of value, including multiple livestock and a houseboat, but also maintained and actively used separate bank accounts at  Eastman Credit Union.  Records showed that Lefler opened these accounts under false names and used the money for his personal lifestyle expenses, including numerous large withdrawals at the Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in North Carolina.

United States Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh of the Western District of Virginia made the announcement.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel J. Murphy prosecuted the case.

Updated June 2, 2022