Sam Hurd, Bears Receiver, Is Charged in Cocaine Plot

Hurd was arrested Wednesday night after meeting with an undercover agent at a Chicago restaurant, according to a criminal complaint that says he was first identified as a potential drug dealer over the summer as the N.F.L. lockout neared an end.

Hurd told the agent that he was interested in buying 5 to 10 kilograms of cocaine and 1,000 pounds of each week to distribute in the Chicago area, the complaint said. He said that he and a co-conspirator distributed about four kilos of cocaine every week, but that their supplier could not keep up with his demands, the complaint alleges.

Judge said Hurd would need to return to Texas to face the charges. During a hearing Thursday in Chicago federal court, Kim ordered Hurd held pending bond. The hearing will be continued Friday after prosecutors and defense lawyers discuss possible bond. Hurd was handcuffed as marshals led him to the hearing.

Brett Greenfield, a defense lawyer, said Thursday that he spoke with prosecutors and expected Hurd to be released Friday. Greenfield said Hurd was ready to “fight the case.”

According to the complaint, Hurd agreed to pay $25,000 for each kilogram of cocaine and $450 a pound for the marijuana. The United States attorney in Texas said Hurd faced up to 40 years in prison and a $2 million fine if convicted of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute more than 500 grams, or half a kilogram, of cocaine.

Hurd’s agent, Ian Greengross, did not return messages.

Coach Lovie Smith said the arrest was a disappointment and a “total surprise,” adding that Hurd was still a member of the Bears for now.

Smith said there was no reason to believe Hurd had problems when the Bears signed him before the season.

Hurd, 26, played for five seasons with the and is in his first season with the Bears. He has played in 77 games over all, starting six and scoring two touchdowns, while contributing mostly on special teams. He has played in 12 games this year, with eight catches for 109 yards.

The Bears agreed to a three-year deal with Hurd reportedly worth up to $5.15 million, including a $1.35 million signing bonus and base pay this season of $685,000.

Teammates said Thursday that they were stunned.

“It’s a situation that you don’t, I don’t, want anybody to be in, especially a close friend,” said fellow receiver Roy Williams, who also played with Hurd in Dallas.

Chicago Bears Player Arrested on Drug Charge

Hurd wanted to set up a drug distribution operation in Chicago and told an undercover law enforcement agent that he wanted to buy five to 10 kilograms of cocaine at a price of $25,000 per kilogram weekly, according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court.

He also said he wanted to buy 1,000 pounds of marijuana for $450 a pound, the complaint said. Hurd, 26, made the offer on Wednesday during a meeting at a Chicago restaurant set up by one of his associates.

During the meeting, he told the undercover agent that he and an unnamed co-conspirator currently distributed about four kilograms of cocaine in the Chicago area but his supplier could not provide enough, the complaint said.

Hurd, who signed a three-year contract with the National Football League’s Bears in July after five seasons with the Dallas Cowboys, also said that he focused on high-end deals while his co-conspirator was in charge of the majority of the deals, the complaint said.

The undercover agent gave Hurd a kilogram of cocaine before leaving the restaurant and the football player was arrested in the parking lot of the Chicago restaurant by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

He was charged with conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine and if convicted, he could face up to 40 years in prison and a $2 million fine.

“We are aware of Sam’s arrest and are continuing to gather details surrounding it,” the Bears said in a statement. “We are disappointed whenever these circumstances arise. We will deal with them appropriately once we have all the information.”

(Reporting By Jeremy Pelofsky; Editing by Frank Pingue)