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Hurd Cut From Bears After Drug Charges

Federal agents claim NFL player was major drug dealer

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    Former Dallas Cowboy Sam Hurd is free on bond after he was arrested on drug charges.

    The receiver, whom federal agents accuse of running a major Dallas-to-Chicago drug pipeline that moved as much as $200,000 of narcotics per week, was also released by the Chicago Bears on Friday.

    Sam Hurd Released on Bond After Hearing

    [DFW] Sam Hurd Released on Bond After Hearing
    Former Cowboys receiver is dropped from the NFL after drug charges (Published Friday, Dec 16, 2011)

    Hurd appeared in an orange jumpsuit and shackles to a bond hearing Friday afternoon where bail was set at $100,000. He posted bail Friday evening, NBC 5 Chicago reported.

    The bond agreement forces Hurd to surrender his passport and also stipulates that Hurd must maintain employment.

    But Bears General Manager Jerry Angelo told NBC 5 Chicago reporter Peggy Kusinski that Hurd was to be released from the team.

    "The right thing to do is cut Sam Hurd," Angelo said.

    He added the team did due diligence before hiring Hurd and was unaware of the alleged drug trafficking.

    It was still unclear when Hurd might return to Dallas, where the criminal charges were filed.

    Hurd’s attorney warned against a rush to judgment after an appearance before a federal judge in Chicago on Thursday.

    "Sam stands ready to fight this case, and we're going to take it one step at a time,” said attorney Brett Greenfield. “We're going to take it day by day."

    Federal agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested Hurd at a Chicago steakhouse after he allegedly bought a kilo of cocaine from an undercover agent and an informant. He arranged to buy a lot more, according to the criminal complaint.

    The investigation started in July, when Hurd was still on the Dallas Cowboys roster as a wide receiver -- before he transferred to the Chicago Bears, the complaint said.

    A man described as Hurd's “known co-conspirator” was pulled over driving Hurd's car in Dallas, and police found marijuana and $88,000 cash inside, the document said. Hurd claimed the money was his and tried to get it back.

    Then, just this month, an informant arranged to meet the Hurd’s contact at a Firestone car repair store in Coppell where he worked. The contact is referred to only by the initials "T.L."

    The Coppell meeting led to Wednesday’s meeting with Hurd in Chicago, agents said.

    News of Hurd's arrest spread quickly around the NFL.

    In the Dallas Cowboys' locker room, defensive coordinator Rob Ryan was giving a routine press conference Wednesday when a newspaper reporter pressed player Jay Ratliff for reaction to Hurd’s arrest.

    Other players had to push Ratliff back.

    The reporter quickly left the room.

    "I'm not messing with you guys,” Ryan joked afterward. “Sorry, I put my money on Ratliff.”

    More: Read the criminal complaint