Chicago Bears Wide Receiver Faces Federal Drug Charges

In what has the potential to become one of the biggest scandals in NFL history, (and possibly in any of the major sports), Chicago Bears wide receiver Sam Hurd was arrested by Department of Homeland Security Agents on December 14, 2011 and charged with conspiring to distribute cocaine. Hurd, 26, is in his first year with the Bears and previously played for the Dallas Cowboys for 5 years. There was a 5 month investigation leading up to the arrest, which began in Dallas. Federal authorities allege that Hurd was attempting to set up a drug distribution network. There have been reports, denied by the NFL and Hurd’s defense attorney, that Hurd had a list of at least 20 NFL players that he was distributing drugs to.

Immediately upon learning of his arrest on drug distribution charges, the Chicago Bears announced that they were releasing Hurd.

The facts as they are presently reported are that Mr. Hurd arranged to meet with a man he believed to be a drug distributor on December 14th. He told the man, who was in fact George Ramirez, a special agent with Homeland Security, that he was seeking to develop a drug distribution network in which he could obtain 5 to 10 kilograms per week of cocaine, and 1000 pounds of marijuana per week at a price of $25,000 per kilogram of cocaine and $450.00 per pound of marijuana. (A kilogram is approximately 2.2 lbs.). Hurd reportedly informed Ramirez that he had been distributing four kilograms of cocaine weekly in Chicago but his supplier was not able to provide him with sufficient quantity.

After believing that they had an agreement, Hurd took possession of one kilogram of cocaine and assured the agent that he would pay for the drugs after practice the next day. When Hurd walked to his car, he was arrested when he placed the bag in his vehicle.

I have reviewed the criminal complaint and the affidavit of Agent Ramirez, which was sworn to on December 15, 2011. In the United States of America v. Samuel George Hurd III, Hurd is charged with a violation of Title 21 of the United States Code, Sections 841 (a)(1), (b)(1)(B)(ii)(II), and 846, in that he allegedly:

Knowingly, intentionally and unlawfully combined, conspired, confederated and agreed with other persons known and unknown, to possess with the intent to distribute 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of cocaine, a controlled substance.

Reviewing Mr. Ramirez’ affidavit, it indicates that back in July of 2011, Hurd’s associate, identified only as “T.L”, was involved in a routine traffic stop in Dallas. A search of T.L.’s car revealed bag containing marijuana and $88,000.00 in cash. T.L. informed the authorities that the money was Hurd’s, that he serviced Hurd’s vehicles and claimed that Hurd frequently left large sums of money in his vehicles. (At the time, Hurd was still playing for the Dallas Cowboys). Rather than simply forget about the money, Hurd began contacting the Homeland Security requesting a return of the $88,000. Over the next month, Homeland Security agents determined that Hurd was associated with four individuals from California who were apparently involved in narcotics trafficking and money laundering.

For the next four months, according to the affidavit, Hurd continued to pursue the drug trafficking network, and placed numerous phone calls and text messages to pursue this goal. Ultimately, Hurd arranged to meet with the “supplier” to discuss terms of an agreement and a “long term business relationship.” It was after this meeting that Hurd was arrested.

Hurt was arraigned on December 16th in Chicago and released on $100,000 bond, with the requirement that he surrender his passport and any firearms. The case will be tried in Texas, where the charges originate. If Hurd is convicted on the drug conspiracy charges, he faces up to 40 years in jail and a $2,000,000.00 fine.

Contact The Westchester County Criminal Defense Lawyers online or toll free at (914) 428-7386 if you are charged with a crime for a free initial consultation with an experienced attorney to discuss the charges against you, and your legal rights and options.

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