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Pickens County, Alabama, sheriff to plead guilty to wire fraud, filing false tax returns

David Abston | Photo: Pickens County Sheriff's Department

The sheriff of Pickens County, Alabama, has been indicted for wire fraud and filing false tax returns.

Posted: Jun 14, 2019 11:42 AM
Updated: Jun 14, 2019 11:47 AM

CARROLLTON, Ala. (WTVA) - The sheriff of Pickens County, Alabama, has been indicted for wire fraud and filing false tax returns.

A nine-count federal indictment was unsealed on Friday against Sheriff David Abston.

U.S. Attorney Jay Town said Abston is accused of defrauding the West Alabama Food Bank and the Highland Baptist Church for his personal gain.

The church, of which he was a member, is located in Gordo.

According to the indictment, the scheme was to reduce his jail food expenses and increase the amount of food allowance he could keep.

As the sheriff, he is responsible for feeding inmates at the Pickens County jail.

To do this, the State of Alabama and other government entities provide the sheriff with a food allowance which he would use to buy food.

He’s also accused of filing false tax returns from the 2015 and 2016 tax years because he failed to report all of his income for those years.

According to a plea agreement, Abston has agreed to plead guilty to one count of wire fraud and one count of filing a false tax return.

The sheriff resigned from his post on Friday morning, ABC 33/40 in Birmingham reports. The county's coroner Chad Harless has assumed the role of sheriff.

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