Former Senator Alvin L. Williams, Jr. Sentenced to 52 Months in Prison for Racketeering
|U.S. Attorney’s Office January 08, 2014|
ST. THOMAS—District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez today sentenced Alvin L. Williams, Jr., former senator for the Legislature of the Virgin Islands, to 52 months in federal prison for racketeering, announced United States Attorney Ronald W. Sharpe, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Special Agent in Charge Carlos Cases, United States Marshal Cheryl Jacobs, Virgin Islands Office of the Inspector General Steven van Beverhoudt, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CID) Special Agent in Charge Daniel W. Auer, U.S. Department of Education Office of Inspector General Special Agent in Charge Yessyka Santana, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Eric Barnard, and Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) Commissioner Rodney Querrard.
Williams, 34, was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshals Service to begin serving his sentence at the conclusion of today’s hearing. In addition to the prison sentence, Judge Gomez ordered Williams to serve three years of supervised release upon completion of his prison sentence, pay restitution in an amount to be determined, and perform 300 hours of community service.
On January 17, 2013, Williams pleaded guilty to operating and participating in a criminal enterprise whose members and associates engaged in illegal activities, including: bribing a Virgin Islands public official, soliciting and receiving bribes from numerous St. Thomas construction project developers, fraudulently soliciting and increasing staff members’ salaries and using the increase of funds for his personal use, and having staff members fraudulently do his University of Phoenix online course for him during legislative work hours.
In the same hearing, Judge Gomez sentenced co-defendants Kim A. Blackett, 30, and Garry Sprauve, 64, two Virgin Islands legislative staff members who worked with Williams.
Sprauve was sentenced to serve one year in prison and three years of probation and ordered to pay restitution in an amount to be determined and perform 300 hours of community service. Sprauve previously pleaded guilty to helping Williams bribe construction developers and also participated with Williams in the fraudulent increase of Sprauve’s legislative salary in order for the increase to be used by Williams.
Blackett was placed on probation, ordered to pay restitution in an amount to be determined, and ordered to perform 300 hours of community service. Blackett previously pleaded guilty to fraudulently completing Williams’ online University of Phoenix course work during legislative work hours.
“Public service is a public trust. Those who violate this trust for personal gain will not escape justice,” U.S. Attorney Sharpe said. “Today’s sentences should be a reminder to all public officials of the possible consequences when they seek to use their office for their own personal gain.”
The case was investigated by the Federal Public Corruption Task Force, which is composed of the FBI, United States Marshals Service, IRS-CI, U.S. Department of Education Inspector General, DEA, Virgin Islands Office of the Inspector General, and the VIPD. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Kim R. Lindquist and Kelly B. Lake.