Defendant Stole Over $30,000 Used in Ruse Undercover Drug Operation
LITTLE ROCK—A former Greene County Sheriff’s Lieutenant has been sentenced to two years in prison after stealing over $30,000 used in a ruse undercover drug operation. Allen Scott Pillow, 56, of Paragould, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Lee P. Rudofsky.
Pillow pleaded guilty on December 21, 2020, to one count of theft of government funds. In addition to the term of 24 months’ imprisonment, Judge Rudofsky also sentenced Pillow to two years of supervised release following his term of imprisonment as well as a $15,200 fine.
After receiving information that former Lieutenant Pillow might be abusing his role with the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, FBI Special Agents and Task Force Officers conducted a ruse narcotics investigation and sought Pillow’s help with the investigation. Pillow had previously retired from Arkansas State Police, where he was suspected to be involved with multiple instances of theft. On November 4, 2019, FBI task force officers parked a rental vehicle in a commercial parking lot in Paragould and staged a glass drug pipe in the vehicle along with a red backpack containing $76,000. The cash was divided into ten bundles of $7,600 each, and investigators recorded the serial numbers.
After staging the vehicle, two FBI Task Force Officers contacted Pillow on his cell phone and asked him to respond to the scene. The officers relayed to Pillow that they began a narcotics investigation in Tennessee and now needed Pillow’s help as the target had traveled into Arkansas. Pillow traveled to the scene in his Sheriff’s Department vehicle, searched the staged rental vehicle, and recovered the glass pipe, backpack, and currency.
Later that day, Pillow called the officers and informed them that the backpack had contained $45,600, leading agents to believe Pillow had taken four bundles of $7,600 each, totaling $30,400 of stolen FBI funds. Agents obtained a search warrant for Pillow’s residence and found $2,300 in his possession and $27,820 in a safe in his attic. The serial numbers on the discovered currency matched the original FBI serial numbers. The remaining $280 in stolen funds was not located.
Pillow was indicted in November 2019, and the case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Erin O’Leary.