NETeller Co-Founder Stephen Lawrence Pleads Guilty

Published on: June 30, 2007 

This past Friday, Stephen Lawrence, co-founder of the infamous payment processor NETeller, plead guilty to a criminal conspiracy charge that he was arrested for in January. Another NETeller director, John David Lefebvre, who was arrested alongside Lawrence, plead not guilty. The case against Lefebvre is pending.

NETeller is well known in the online gambling industry as once being the chief facilitators for US citizens to place bets with offshore bookmakers and other internet gambling activities. However that all changed when the US went forth with a major crackdown on the online gambling industry. Lawrence and Lefebvre were both arrested as a result.

A Canadian citizen, Lawrence currently remains free on $5 million bail and is said to be returning to his home in the Bahamas as he awaits his sentencing.

"Mr. Lawrence is very glad to have this episode over and is looking forward to moving on to the next stage in his life," said Peter Neiman, Lawrences attorney.

His lawyers also let it known that Lawrence has been cooperating with investigators. The US government is seeking $100 million in restitution and Lawrence has agreed to be held partly responsible for the reimbursement.

The statutory maximum of prison time that Mr. Lawrence is facing is said to be 5 years, but thanks to his cooperation in the case, it is likely that this will be reduced, if he faces any prison time at all. His sentencing hearing is scheduled to take place in October.

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