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Former Superior Court Judge Brooks E. Blitch III of Clinch County was sentenced Tuesday to three years’ probation and fined $100,000 after pleading guilty to fraud in federal court in Macon. Blitch’s crime was punishable by up to 20 years in prison but he avoided prison time under the plea agreement. Prosecutors dropped the remaining [...]
The Georgia Supreme Court accepted Charles A. Thomas Jr.’s surrender of his law license today. Maybe he can be a “jailhouse lawyer” while he’s serving his six-year prison sentence for theft and forgery. Thomas, a member of the Georgia House from 1979 through 1994, sold title insurance for Stewart Title Guaranty Co. until losing that privilege in 2004. Since then, Thomas continued to offer title insurance to clients, forging the policies and collecting the premiums for himself.
In 2007, Rudy Eller hid a gun fired by his chief deputy in a domestic dispute and lied to GBI investigators about it. A year later, Eller pleaded guilty to making false statements, tampering with evidence, hindering apprehension of a criminal, and violating his oath of office. Eller’s lawyer and the district attorney asked the judge to show mercy on Eller, who suffers from diabetes and emphysema. But Superior Court Judge Lynn Alderman was unmoved: “The court is in the business of justice. Mercy is for the Lord and other parties who are not here today.”
Former state Rep. Roger Byrd pleaded guilty Aug. 18 to two counts of theft by taking and was ordered to pay $210,000 in restitution. Byrd got 20 years on probation, but no prison time if he repays the money within 30 months. (If not, he would go to prison for 4 1/2 to 5 years.) Prosecutors said Byrd took $100,000 from the Jeff Davis County Development Authority and another $100,000 from a relocated manufacturer that folded after less than a year, leaving the authority mre than $2 million in debt.
A. Reginald Eaves, now a candidate for the Atlanta City Council, hit the headlines three decades ago over a police cheating scandal. He hit the slammer 10 years later after a federal jury convicted him of taking bribes as a Fulton County commissioner. For the curious, we have dug up the parole board’s 1998 decision that allows Eaves to vote again and run for office (but no guns, Reggie).
Former Telfair County Sheriff Jimmie Williamson will serve three years in federal prison for misusing county funds, federal prosecutors announced. According to testimony, Williamson paid for an all-terrain vehicle with county funds, pocketed fines intended for the Probate Court and kept $5,000 seized in a traffic stop for himself, according to the Macon Telegraph.
It was a long fall for South African businessman Andries Stephan Botes. The 52-year-old went from mover and shaker in computer consulting to federal prisoner 56403-019 – and to forever being linked with an election scandal that landed Georgia’s first woman elected to statewide office in jail. Today, Botes spends his days in Dalby, a [...]
Maybe fate landed Merle Temple in Memphis. After all, the former Georgia deputy school superintendent professes a love of Elvis. … and a few other things. But he won’t be seeing Graceland anytime soon, even if it is just 18 miles away. Temple is serving an 8-year federal prison sentence for a scheme to award [...]
It’s a small world after all – at least for prisoner 56443-019. Former State School Superintendent Linda C. Schrenko has spent the last few years less than an hour from Disney World, at a federal pokey in central Florida. Georgia’s first woman elected to statewide office, once a darling of the GOP and a hopeful [...]
Josh Kenyon has been scared straight. With the federal pen now five years behind him, the former chief of staff for Fulton County Commission Chairman Mitch Skandalakis is helping the man who put him in jail teach corporate ethics. Kenyon lost his job, his wife, his family and his law license after serving six months [...]
Where to begin? Sailor is serving a 63-month sentence in federal prison in West Virginia. He was charged in December 2007 after offering to launder $375,000 in “drug money” that actually came from an undercover federal agent. While he was awaiting sentencing, Sailor defrauded the Greater New Light Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta, where he [...]
Swindall, a former two-term congressman from DeKalb, was convicted in 1989 of lying to a grand jury in a federal sting investigation. An undercover IRS agent testified that Swindall discussed the possible use of $850,000 in illegal drug proceeds to finance cost overruns in the construction of his Stone Mountain house. He served a year [...]
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Some criminals have their photos and crimes plastered all over the Internet, so people know who they are and what they did. Not politicians -- until now. The Crooked Politician Registry is an archive of info on public servants who crossed the line.
do it yourself corruption investigation
Most public corruption cases in Georgia are prosecuted in federal court. The U.S. attorney for North Georgia, including metro Atlanta, has an excellent Web site with archived news releases on prominent cases.
Federal court files may be searched online for a nominal fee through PACER. (The first $10 a year of searches are free.)
With the right keywords, online search engines will also turn up news releases or court rulings on a particular case at no cost.