Judge Grants $7 Million Bond for Alex Murdaugh Following Slew of New Criminal Charges

In a virtual hearing Monday, a South Carolina judge set one of the highest bonds in state history — accompanied with several conditions — on Murdaugh's 48 counts of financial misconduct

Alex Murdaugh
Alex Murdaugh. Photo: Richland County Jail

Beleaguered South Carolina attorney Alex Murdaugh received a devastating blow during a virtual bond hearing Monday, when a state judge set his bond at $7 million for the 48 counts of financial misconduct he faces.

On Thursday, while Murdaugh was already awaiting a bond hearing on 27 financial charges, a grand jury issued seven new indictments against him consisting of 21 additional financial charges.

Murdaugh is now accused of defrauding his law firm, former clients and other alleged victims of more than $6.2 million in total.

Judge Alison Renee Lee not only granted Murdaugh one of the largest bonds in South Carolina's history, according to The Island Packet, but she also tacked on several conditions: The bond would need to be paid in full, and if Murdaugh were to be released, he would be on house arrest in South Carolina — under GPS monitoring — during which time he would need to undergo random drug testing and counseling.

Additionally, Murdaugh is not allowed to have contact with victims, witnesses or co-defendants in the cases against him, The Greenville News reports.

Immediately after the bond was set, Murdaugh's attorney, Dick Harpootlian, asked Lee to reconsider its dollar amount, claiming that Murdaugh would be unable to pay the $7 million required for release, according to multiple outlets.

Lee said she would consider a motion to reduce the bond to $6.2 million in the future, WCBD-TV reports — the same amount that he's accused of stealing.

Murdaugh first entered the national spotlight when he came home on June 7 to find his wife, Maggie Murdaugh, 52, and his youngest son, Paul Murdaugh, 22, gunned down on their sprawling Islandton property.

murdaugh family
Maggie, Paul and Alex Murdaugh.

No suspects have been arrested in connection with the murders. Murdaugh, a scion of a legal dynasty in the South Carolina Lowcountry, has been named as a person of interest, his attorney has said.

After the murders, Murdaugh made news again when he allegedly tried to stage his own death so that his other son, Buster Murdaugh, 26, could benefit from a $10 million life insurance settlement. He was criminally charged in connection with the botched suicide-for-hire plot and is awaiting trial in that case.

Since October, Murdaugh has been held behind bars in connection with the alleged misappropriation of settlement funds that were supposed to go to the sons of his late housekeeper, Gloria Satterfield, who died in a trip-and-fall accident while working at the Murdaugh's home.

Murdaugh remains jailed in Richland County.

Updated by
Kyler Alvord

Kyler Alvord leads PEOPLE's politics coverage as a news editor for the brand. He joined the publication in 2021 on the crime beat.

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