Ralph Sampson indicted on perjury charge

1/18/2006 - NBA

RICHMOND, Va. -- Former NBA player Ralph Sampson has been
indicted on charges of lying about his finances to obtain
court-appointed counsel in a federal child support case.

Sampson, 45, was indicted on one count each of perjury and
making a false claim, the U.S. Attorney's Office said Tuesday. The
charges are related to an affidavit Sampson submitted to obtain a
court-appointed lawyer in a child support case.

The 7-foot-4 former Virginia All-American and top NBA draft
choice is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 1 on charges he failed to
pay $307,036 in child support to two daughters by different women.
The children live in northern Virginia.

Under a plea agreement, Sampson would pay the tardy child
support and be spared fines and a 30-month jail term. A judge must
agree to the sentencing.

At an October hearing, Sampson's attorneys told a judge the
Harrisonburg native had spent the summer trying to raise money to
settle his debts. Prosecutors claimed he worked for an online
communications firm; Sampson's attorney said it was on an
unsalaried basis.

Court documents showed Sampson earned more than $500,000 in
1999, but less than $12,000 in 2001.

Sampson scored 7,039 points during his nine seasons in the NBA.
He retired in 1992 after playing for Houston, Golden State,
Sacramento and Washington.