Alex Murdaugh, the disgraced former South Carolina attorney convicted earlier this year of killing his wife and son, has pleaded guilty to federal financial crimes.
The plea entered into court on Thursday marked the first time that Murdaugh admitted to committing a crime, The Associated Press reported. He pleaded guilty to 22 counts of financial fraud and money laundering, court records show.
“I want to take responsibility,” Murdaugh, wearing his orange South Carolina prison jumpsuit, said in court, according to the AP. “I want my son to see me take responsibility. It’s my hope that by taking responsibility that the people I’ve hurt can begin to heal.”
Authorities said that from at least July 2011 through October 2021, Murdaugh conspired to swindle his clients out of millions of dollars. At the time, he was working as a well-known personal injury attorney.
As part of a plea agreement reached Monday with prosecutors, Murdaugh agreed to make full restitution and to cooperate with investigators, including submitting to any requested polygraph examinations.
In exchange, prosecutors agreed to ask a court to allow Murdaugh to serve his federal sentence at the same time as he serves any sentence from a state court. He faces a maximum sentence of 30 years for the most serious federal charge filed against him.
The date for his sentencing hearing was not immediately set.
In March, a jury in South Carolina convicted Murdaugh of killing his wife, 52-year-old Margaret “Maggie” Murdaugh, and his son, 22-year-old Paul Murdaugh. The pair were found shot dead at the family’s home in Colleton County on the night of June 7, 2021.
He was sentenced to serve two life terms for the murders. His attorneys are appealing his conviction.
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