Larry McClure, Abingdon-based race team co-owner, indicted by federal grand jury

Dave Ongie • Oct 29, 2008 at 12:00 AM

ABINGDON — Larry McClure, co-owner of Morgan-McClure Motorsports, was indicted by a federal grand jury on a variety of charges related to mail fraud, wire fraud and numerous violations of the Federal Tax Law on Tuesday.

McClure was charged in three separate indictments — one of which was returned Tuesday in District Court in Abingdon — with three counts of mail fraud, three counts of filing a false tax return, two counts of obstructing a tax investigation, two counts of money laundering and one count of wire fraud.

If McClure is convicted on all counts, the maximum penalty he could face is 115 years of federal imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $2.75 million.

According to a press release from acting U.S. Attorney Julia C. Dudley, the charges stem from federal tax returns filed in 2002, 2003 and 2004 that contained information McClure did not believe to be true or correct.

McClure allegedly failed to include in his returns large sums of money he received from an individual identified as “Person A” in return for the use of race cars in ARCA racing series events.

The indictment says that in May 2006, McClure’s wife, Virginia, wrote a check to Person A for $325,000 that included the notation “loan payment.”

Larry McClure is accused of falsely telling IRS investigators that the check was repayment for a series of loans McClure took from Person A.

The wire fraud count stems from an incident in early 2003 during which McClure is accused of using a fax transmission to fraudulently claim that he spent $59,852 to paint four new show car trailers.

Phone calls placed to Morgan-McClure Motorsports on Tuesday evening were not immediately returned.

Morgan-McClure Motorsports set up shop in Abingdon in 1983. The organization has won 14 NASCAR Cup races, including three Daytona 500 victories.

But the single-car team has fallen on hard times in recent years and was forced to cease operations just weeks shy of the 2008 Daytona 500.

The No. 4 car hasn’t competed so far this season as McClure and his partner Tim Morgan have pursued sponsorship opportunities in order to provide a stable relaunch.

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