Stearns County Man Charged in Murder-for-Hire Plot
United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger today announced a criminal complaint charging ROBERT JAMES SCHUELLER, 29, in a murder-for-hire plot targeting the fiancé of his former paramour. SCHUELLER is charged with the use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §1958(a). The defendant appeared this afternoon before Magistrate Judge Tony Leung in U.S. District Court in St. Paul, Minnesota.
“This defendant is charged with orchestrating a murder-for-hire plot,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Allyn. “Fortunately for the intended victim in this case, the contract killing was never carried out. The FBI and Stearns County Sheriff’s Office pursued diligently this investigation, and we are grateful for their successful efforts to keep Minnesotans safe from violence.”
According to the complaint and documents filed in court, ROBERT SCHUELLER is the President of Nomad Pipeline Services (Nomad). Between approximately May 2013 and August 2013, SCHUELLER, who is married, was engaged in an extramarital affair with R.T., then an employee of Nomad. Approximately three months after R.T. ended the relationship with SCHUELLER, SCHUELLER learned that R.T. was in a relationship with C.A. SCHUELLER subsequently tried to reignite the relationship with R.T., but was rebuffed.
According to the complaint and documents filed in court, on February 6, 2014, SCHUELLER contacted another employee of Nomad, W.E. SCHUELLER knew W.E. had several prior felony convictions and had served time in prison. He asked if W.E. maintained contact with anyone from prison. When W.E. answered in the affirmative, SCHUELLER told W.E that he wanted to hire someone to murder C.A. On February 13, 2014, W.E. pretended to have identified a former prison associate who may be willing to murder C.A. for SCHUELLER.
According to the complaint and documents filed in court, sometime in March 2014, SCHUELLER sent a package to W.E. containing $10,000 in cash and two of his own business cards, on which he had written C.A.’s name and information about where C.A. worked. On May 2, 2014, W.E. called SCHUELLER and told him that he was unable to find someone to carry out the murder. After the phone call, SCHUELLER texted W.E., “burn those business cards.” W.E. subsequently returned the $10,000 to SCHUELLER.
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Stearns County Sheriff’s Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Julie E. Allyn and Steven L. Schleicher.
ROBERT JAMES SCHUELLER, 29 Farming Township, Minn.
- Use of interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire, one count