Jury convicts Nesbitt on drug charges

Julius "Butch" Nesbitt was convicted on five of six criminal counts Thursday, Aug. 26, related to illegal distribution of prescription drugs and his attempt to fake his own death.

CHARLESTON -

A jury deliberated five hours today before convicting Julius “Butch” Nesbitt of running a drug ring of illegal pill sales out of his home in rural Georgetown County, primarily the pain-reliever oxycodone.

Jurors at the federal courthouse in Charleston convicted Nesbitt on five of the six counts he faced, failing to agree on one gun-related charge.

Nesbitt showed no emotion as the verdict was read. He’ll face sentencing in the next three to six months, and likely faces as much as 20 years behind bars.

One of the guilty counts covered triggering a bogus Coast Guard search after Nesbitt faked his own death at sea over Thanksgiving 2007 in an apparent plot to avoid prison time. The search cost taxpayers more than $170,000 to launch an air, land and sea search of Winyah Bay where he boat was found deserted.

Nesbitt was arrested six weeks later living in Indiana.