Kentucky lawyer who vanished pleads not guilty to escape

Cornelia Mascio
Dicembre 7, 2017

Conn's attorney, Scott White, entered a not guilty plea to those charges during the hearing. Conn only spoke when asked questions by the U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert E. Wier and offered brief replies. Yet a federal judge released Conn on $1.25 million bail, and allowed him to remain free even after he pleaded guilty in March to stealing from the federal government and bribing a judge to fix Social Security fraud cases.

White said Conn started serving his 12-year sentence as soon as he was transferred to the custody of the USA government. If Conn is ultimately convicted on those charges as well as the escape-related charges, he could face a potential life sentence, White said.

Eric Christopher Conn, 57, of Pikeville, Kentucky, and his alleged accomplice, Curtis Lee Wyatt, were charged in connection with Conn's escape in a seven-count indictment returned on September 6, 2017, in the Eastern District of Kentucky in Lexington.

Hess was there to greet Conn as the government plane landed at Bluegrass Airport Tuesday night. "I never thought they would catch him".

As reporters shouted questions at him, Conn said: "It's good to be home", according to WSAZ-TV.

The Kentucky lawyer who duped the United States Social Security Administration (SSA) out of more than $550mn in disability payments has been arrested in Honduras.

Conn is charged along with his former employee, Curtis Wyatt, of planning and executing the June 2 escape where Conn, who was on house arrest, cut off his Global Positioning System ankle monitor and ultimately left the country.

"That's wonderful", said Donna Dye, whose husband was among Conn's clients in Appalachia.

But in reality, he ran a criminal group whose members included doctors and judges, authorities said.

The same indictment claims Conn hatched his escape plot around June 2016, two months after he was first indicted and a year before his disappearance.

But for hundreds of families in Eastern Kentucky and in West Virginia, the painful legacy of Conn's scam will linger for years.

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