Alex Murdaugh’s saga gets even weirder with new drug trafficking charges alongside Curtis Smith

Alex Murdaugh, the suspended South Carolina attorney accused of a staggering array of criminal activities, is facing additional charges including drug trafficking.

The South Carolina Attorney General’s Office announced Tuesday that Murdaugh and Curtis Smith, 62, have been charged with two counts of criminal conspiracy, including one count of narcotics-related oxycodone. Smith, a distant cousin and alleged co-conspirator in Murdaugh’s infamously botched assisted suicide last September, also faces money laundering, counterfeiting and additional drug trafficking charges.

The indictment alleges that Murdaugh and Smith used hundreds of illegal transactions in several counties in South Carolina “to facilitate the acquisition and distribution of illegally obtained narcotics.” It took place between October 7, 2013 and September 7, 2021, when the couple and “other persons known and unknown to the grand jury” allegedly conspired to purchase and distribute oxycodone, the indictment said.

Murdaugh and Smith are also said to have conspired to commit financial crimes together during the same period after Murdaugh allegedly provided Smith with over 400 checks totaling $2,413,754.

“Murdaugh drew the checks against accounts under his control at multiple banks and made the checks payable to various versions of Smith’s name and Smith’s close associates,” the indictment said. “In some cases, Smith forged the confirmation of his close associates without their knowledge or consent, and then certified the checks himself. In each case, Smith cashed the checks in cash or deposit. Murdaugh and Smith structured many of these transactions and used them to facilitate the acquisition and distribution of illegally obtained narcotics.”

Prosecutors had previously alleged that Murdaugh conspired with Smith to stage his own suicide last Labor Day to secure a $10 million insurance payout for his son Buster. It came just months after Murdaugh’s wife, Margaret, and his other son, Paul, were found murdered outside their sprawling estate.

Murdaugh called police on September 4, 2021 to say he had been shot in the head by an unidentified truck driver on a backcountry road. But days later, he reportedly admitted to police that Smith shot him at his behest in order to stage his own murder for an insurance payout. Shortly after, he was put into rehab for an opioid addiction.

Smith has repeatedly dismissed Murdaugh’s version of events, claiming he was “set up” to take the fall. Smith has also denied claims by Murdaugh’s attorneys that he was at least once the suspended attorney’s drug dealer.

Since his arrest for the failed suicide, Murdaugh has faced 16 grand jury charges, including 81 financial crime charges, for allegedly stealing more than $8 million from clients and his former law firm.

In the various indictments, prosecutors allege that Murdaugh funneled funds into a fake account he created for personal gain. The fraud allegations include a claim that Murdaugh diverted millions of dollars into a secret bank account stemming from a wrongful death settlement intended for the sons of his former housekeeper, Gloria Satterfield. Murdaugh is also facing a lawsuit related to the Satterfield settlement.

After Satterfield died in a fall on Murdaugh’s property in 2018, the disgraced attorney reportedly coordinated with her family to “sue herself to seek an insurance settlement.” However, Satterfield’s two sons insist they did not receive a penny of the $4.3 million payout.

Murdaugh has also been implicated in other investigations, including allegations that he conspired to influence the investigation into a 2019 drunken boating accident involving his late son, Paul, in which a young girl was killed.

If you or a loved one is struggling with suicidal thoughts, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Alex Murdaugh’s saga gets even weirder with new drug trafficking charges alongside Curtis Smith


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