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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

October 22, 2009

Timothy J. Heaphy, United States Attorney

Contact: Brian McFinn

(540) 857-2974

(540) 857-2179 (fax)

Maryland Man Found Guilty On Obstruction Of Justice And Murder For Hire Charges

James R. Hackley, IV Will be Sentenced January 7, 2010

HARRISONBURG, VIRGINIA — A Fort Washington, MD man who tried to trade a motorcycle for the murder of a witness set to testify against him in an upcoming drug trial was found guilty Wednesday of all counts against him, including obstruction of justice and murder for hire.

United States Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy and Phil Durham, Special Agent-In-Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives announced today that James Richard Hackley, IV, a.k.a. “J.R.,” a.k.a. “Baby Jr.,” 37, was found guilty of conspiring to distribute more than five grams of crack cocaine, six counts of distribution, one count of murder for hire, one count of solicitation to commit a murder for hire, one count of obstruction of justice and one count of possession of a firearm after having been convicted of felony.

During a three day trial in Charlottesville, the jury heard evidence that while housed at the Warren County Jail in April of 2009, Hackley solicited other inmates to murder a witness scheduled to testify against him in a pending drug case. An undercover agent of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was introduced to Hackley inside the Warren County Jail. Hackley then solicited and “hired” the undercover agent to murder the witness in exchange for a motorcycle.

USA Heaphy stated:

“The integrity of the judicial process is a matter of paramount importance. This case should serve as a reminder that those who obstruct justice in order to evade justice will face swift and certain prosecution for their crimes.”

The investigation of the case was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Northwest Regional Drug Task Force. The Northwest Regional Drug Task Force is made up of officers from the Warren County Sheriff’s Office, the Front Royal Police Department and the Virginia State Police. Assistant United States Attorney Ronald Huber and Special Assistant United States Attorney Robert N. Tracci are prosecuting the case for the United States.