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Inmate Sentenced to 21 Years Behind Bars in Murder-for-Hire Plot Against U.S. Attorney, FBI Informant

Richard Robert Gilbert. Photo Spartanburg County Detention Center.

By Steve Neavling

A federal inmate has been sentenced to an additional 21 years behind bars for a murder-for-hire plot against an assistant U.S. attorney and a confidential FBI informant, the Justice Department announced this week.

Richard Robert Gilbert, a Federal Bureau of Prisons inmate, was serving a 130-month sentence for trafficking methamphetamine in Kentucky in 2017. While in prison, he used a contraband cell phone in an attempt to hire a hitman to kill the federal prosecutor and a key witness in his drug trafficking case. 

Unbeknownst to Gilbert, he was arranging the murder with an undercover FBI task force officer. As a downpayment for the hit, Gilbert sent the officer a $2,000 check from his prison canteen account. He planned to pay the rest using money from real estate investments. 

Gilbert provided maps and directions to the undercover officer. 

U.S. District Juge Henry M. Herlong, Jr., sentenced Gilbert to 262 months in prison. 

The FBI and BOP Special Investigative Services Team led the case.  


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