Capurro pleads guilty to #8216;structuring#8217;

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 14, 2007

CINCINNATI — A doctor who was accused of operating pill mills in Lawrence County and elsewhere pleaded guilty to charges against him earlier this week in U.S. District Court in Cincinnati.

Nico Capurro pleaded guilty to one count of structuring money transactions to avoid reporting

requirements in connection with cash he received from his involvement with seven “pain clinics”

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in Hanging Rock, Lucasville, Chillicothe and Jackson.

Structuring is a type of money laundering. It carries a maximum punishment of five years’ imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,000 and three years of supervised release. No sentencing date has been set. However, Capurro has agreed to forfeit

$88,000 involved in the transactions.

According to a statement of facts filed with Capurro’s plea, he manipulated five deposits of cash and cashier’s checks into brokerage and bank accounts he owned in order to keep each transaction under $10,000. Federal law requires financial institutions to report cash transactions of $10,000 or more. Capurro made the deposits between May 2001 and June 2002.

“Capurro also agreed to comply with an audit by the Internal Revenue Service to determine if his activities

created any additional tax liability for him,” Gregory G. Lockhart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio said. “Capurro also agreed to cooperate with investigators in the ongoing investigation.”

Lockhart commended the cooperative investigation by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, IRS, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and deputies in the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office, and Deputy Criminal Chief Anthony Springer, who is prosecuting the case.

Lawrence County Sheriff Tim Sexton said he was pleased with Capurro’s guilty plea but noted that “we’re still fighting the battle” in the war on drugs in Lawrence County.

“The public complained and we knew what was going on and we investigated it,” Sexton said. “We do take these matters seriously.”