Ex-SC State board chairman convicted of racketeering wants lower sentence

Ex-SC State board chairman convicted of racketeering wants lower sentence

CHARLESTON, SC (WIS) - A former South Carolina State University board chairman is asking the federal government to lower his sentence after he was convicted on 29 counts of racketeering and conspiracy.

Jonathan Pinson, who was sentenced last March to 5 years in prison, is asking a federal court judge in Charleston to reduce that.

The jury in Pinson's 2014 case considered evidence that he was engaged in four different schemes. One scheme revolved around the 2011 homecoming concert at SCSU and Pinson's efforts to steer the concert promotion contract to his close friend and former SCSU roommate, Eric Robinson, in exchange for a kickback.

Other schemes included Pinson's theft of government funds earmarked for the installation of a diaper plant in Marion County. Evidence showed that proceeds from the grant, intended to create jobs in rural Marion County, were instead pocketed by Pinson and his associates, Lance Wright, Tony Williams, and Phil Mims, each of whom has pled guilty to charges related to the fraud, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

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