12/30/08 – Admitted felon [Buster White] disassociates himself from Alamo Ministries

Texarkana Gazette
December 30, 2008
By Jim Williamson

Admitted felon disassociates himself from Alamo Ministries
White waives the right to consult with his former minister

Leslie Ray “Buster” White, 58, who attended Tony Alamo Christian Ministries and asked in a plea bargain to continue to consult with Alamo after pleading guilty to federal charges, has now disassociated himself from Alamo.

“… Due to the allegations regarding Mr. Alamo’s alleged activities, he (Mr. White) was waiving the non-binding stipulation contained in his plea bargain agreement regarding the recommendation that he be able to consult with his former minister (Tony Alamo) and attend services at the Tony Alamo Christian Ministries,” according to an e-mail sent by David L. Botsford, an Austin attorney representing White.

On Sept. 2, White pleaded guilty to one count of trafficking in CDs “affixed” with counterfeit labels.

In an unrelated incident, Alamo was arrested Sept. 25 on federal criminal charges alleging he transported minor girls across state lines for sex. Alamo has pleaded not guilty.

Botsford’s e-mail was sent to the Gazette Saturday after a story in that day’s edition reporting White’s sentencing scheduled for Jan. 8.

Saturday’s story also provided background about White asking on Sept. 2 to be allowed to consult with his then-minister Tony Alamo because Alamo is a convicted felon. Federal criminal guidelines restrict association with a convicted felon.

Alamo was sentenced to six years in federal prison in September 1994 after he was convicted in U.S. District Court in Memphis of willful failure to file an income tax return. He was also fined $210,000 and ordered to remain on probation for a year after his release, according to court documents.

Alamo ended his federal sentence in the Texarkana, Texas, Federal Correctional Institution and was released in December 1998.

U.S. Assistant Attorney Alan Jackson of Tyler, Texas, received an e-mail Monday morning from Botsford saying White is no longer asking to attend church services at Tony Alamo Christian Ministries.

“He (White) is no longer asking to associate with the church,” said Jackson.

Jackson also talked with Botsford about White no longer being associated with Alamo since the Sept. 2 hearing.

White originally pleaded innocent on Oct. 4, 2007, to federal charges of trafficking in 1,475 pairs of counterfeit Nike shoes and 1,894 CDs.

White could be sentenced to a maximum of five years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.

He could also be sentenced to three years of supervised probation after being released from federal prison.

The plea agreement also requires White to pay restitution of $21,775.81 to the Record Industry of America for royalties he failed to pay by selling counterfeit CDs.

He will also be required to pay $6,224.19 to ISC, a private investigation firm used to determine the CD sales.

White will also forfeit $28,000 to the federal government.

The FBI, which conducted the investigation, confiscated about $109,185 in cash from a safe in the Great American Outlet Mall in Texarkana, Texas.

Jackson said the payments to the Record Industry of America, to ISC and the federal government will be paid from the money the FBI confiscated.

The federal government will return about $53,000 to White from the $109,185 originally confiscated.

Jackson said the shoes and CDs were forfeited and have been destroyed by federal authorities.

The investigation started from a “tip to the FBI,” said Jackson.

In: 2000-2007

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