It’s still hard to believe businesses kept hiring Ray Reggie years after the illegal activities of his now-defunct Media Direct were reported by a Lafayette media outlet and then picked up statewide over the years as the allegations continued to mount.
But clearly they did.
The Advocate reports that the 53-year-old Mandeville media consultant, son of the late Edmund Reggie who once worked for well-known Democratic leaders like President Clinton, and U.S. Sens. Hillary Clinton and the late Ted Kennedy (Ray’s brother-in-law), was sentenced Wednesday to more than 11 years in federal prison for billing a group of south Louisiana car dealerships more than $1.2 million for advertising purchases he never made.
The two-time convicted felon, described by a prosecutor as a “serial fraudster” and “flim-flam con artist,” got the maximum sentence.
The Advocate reports:
Even though 53-year-old Raymond Reggie pleaded guilty in the fall to five counts of mail fraud, he testified Wednesday that he was stroke-impaired when he admitted his guilt Oct. 27, and he asked U.S. District Judge Shelly Dick to let him withdraw that guilty plea and instead go to trial. Reggie suffered a stroke Oct. 6.
Dick declined his request, finding the plea he made in front of her in the fall was done so knowingly and voluntarily.
Reggie, who was sentenced about a decade ago to a year in prison for bank frauds in Baton Rouge and New Orleans, vehemently proclaimed his innocence on the current charges.
“I never stole anything. I never broke the law. It was a nontraditional pay arrangement. I didn’t do anything wrong. I am 100 percent not guilty,” he told Dick, referring to the money he was accused of fraudulently obtaining from Slidell-based Supreme Automotive Group and Super Chevy Dealers of Baton Rouge between 2008 and 2012 while working as a media consultant for the groups of car dealerships. ...
In addition to the 135-month prison term Dick imposed, the judge ordered Reggie to pay a combined $1.2 million in restitution: $968,556 to Supreme Automotive Group and $249,100 to Super Chevy Dealers.
Dick also ordered Reggie to be taken immediately into federal custody. ...
Reggie also faces state theft charges in St. Tammany Parish.
Read the Advocate story here.