Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, announced that John F. Williams, a formerly elected member of Warner Robins City Council, was sentenced today by the Honorable Marc T. Treadwell, United States District Judge for the Middle District of Georgia, to serve concurrent sentences of 14 months’ imprisonment, followed by one year supervised release, and to pay a $100 mandatory assessment fee on each of three counts of which he was convicted by a jury on April 25, 2012. Williams will be allowed to self-report to the Bureau of Prisons at a later date.
Williams was found guilty after a three-day jury trial on all counts of the indictment charging extortion under color of official right, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1951(a); false statements to a federal agency, in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 1001; and tampering with a witness, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1512(b)(3).
Count one of the indictment alleged that John F. Williams did knowingly and intentionally attempt to obstruct and affect, in any way and degree, commerce and the movement of articles and commodities in commerce by extortion and that is Williams unlawfully obtained property from another person in the form of $1,720 not otherwise due him and as a commission in relation to the sale of a vehicle to the Warner Robins Police Department.
Count two of the indictment alleged that John F. Williams did knowingly and willfully make a materially false statement to the Federal Bureau of Investigation concerning the sale of the vehicle to the Warner Robins Police Department, stating that he received no payment of money in relation to the sale of the vehicle, when, in truth and fact, Williams received a payment of $1,720 in relation to the sale.
Count three of the indictment alleged that John F. Williams attempted to corruptly persuade another person with intent to hinder, delay, and prevent that person from communicating to a law enforcement officer facts regarding the sale of the vehicle.
“This sentence sends a clear message to politicians that citizens will not tolerate corruption under any circumstances. Our citizens are entitled to know that my office will pursue those officials who violate their duties and the trust of the public they serve without hesitation,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Moore.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Paul McCommon.