South Carolina U.S. Attorney Sherri A. Lydon announced Tuesday that Daniel Edward Johnson, 48, of Blythewood and the former Fifth Circuit Solicitor for Kershaw and Richland counties, was sentenced to one year and one day in federal prison after previously pleading guilty to wire fraud.
“A prosecutor’s duty is to enforce the law diligently, vigorously, and justly,” Lydon said in a press release. “As Solicitor, Dan Johnson represented to his constituents, law enforcement, and the courts that he was enforcing the law while he violated it himself time and again. Justice has been served, and we look forward to working with the fine men and women of the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office and Solicitor Gipson as they move forward from under the cloud of Johnson’s conduct. We are grateful to the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office for their assistance in holding him accountable.”
Facts presented in court established that while Johnson served as the Fifth Circuit solicitor he used solicitor’s office funds to cover personal and non-office-related expenses. Johnson was issued solicitor’s office credit cards reading “DAN JOHNSON, Fifth Circuit Sol Office.” Using these cards, Johnson made a series of personal and non-office-related purchases, starting no later than 2016. Johnson fraudulently used these cards more than 100 times, improperly charging the Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office over $44,000. Examples of some of the fraudulent transactions include:
• September 7, 2016, charge for $208.79, at the Elara by Hilton Grand Vacations in Las Vegas.
• September 7, 2016, charge for $911.48, at the Doubletree Magic Mile hotel in Chicago.
• October 1, 2016, charge for $685.07, to Copa Airlines, an airline based in Panama.
• October 5, 2016, charge for $137.22, at the Hilton Columbia Center in Columbia.
The total loss amount caused by Johnson’s fraudulent transactions is approximately $44,317.57.
Senior U.S. District Judge Cameron McGowan Currie sentenced Johnson to one year and one day in federal prison, to be followed by three years of court-ordered supervision. The additional day beyond one year makes Johnson eligible to receive up to 54 days of credit against his sentence for good behavior in prison. There is no parole in the federal system.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case along with the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division. Asst. U.S. attorneys Winston D. Holliday Jr., Alyssa Leigh Richardson and William Camden Lewis of the Columbia office prosecuted the case.
Johnson still faces indictments by the S.C. State Grand Jury for misconduct in office, embezzlement of public funds and obtaining property by false pretenses.