Former York Co. court deputy pleads guilty in blackmail case

YORK, S.C. — A former courthouse deputy has pleaded guilty to trying to blackmail York County Sheriff Bruce Bryant.

The Herald of Rock Hill reports 71-year-old Julio Cesar Rua pleaded guilty last week to contempt of court. A judge sentenced Rua to six months in prison suspended to two years’ probation.

Rua was a courthouse deputy for the York County Sheriff’s Office and was terminated in 2013. After being terminated, Rua filed a lawsuit alleging racial discrimination by co-workers while he was employed, and claimed discrimination played a role in his termination. The lawsuit was dismissed.

An indictment says Rua mailed letters to Bryant in 2013 to extort money from Bryant to “compel settlement of a lawsuit” with “an offer” to Rua. Documents also say Rua attempted to intimidate and coerce Bryant.