'Deportation bus' politician jailed after being indicted on insurance-fraud charges

YouTubeRepublican Georgia state Sen. Michael Williams.
  • Republican state Sen. Michael Williams was accused of lying to Georgia authorities about his whereabouts when he reported that his campaign office in Gainesville was burglarized in May.
  • Williams reportedly said he was at home when about $US300,000 worth of computer servers were allegedly stolen.
  • His former campaign manager described the indictment as a “political witch hunt.”
  • Williams made headlines during his campaign for governor in Georgia by driving a bus dubbed the “deportation bus,” the outside of which was covered with controversial messages.

The Republican Georgia state senator who steered his controversial campaign for governor with a “deportation bus” was jailed Wednesday after he was indicted on insurance-fraud charges and other crimes.

Michael Williams turned himself in on Wednesday, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He is accused of lying to Georgia authorities about his whereabouts when he reported that his campaign office in Gainesville was burglarized in May.

Williams reportedly said he was at home when about $US300,000 worth of computer servers at his office were allegedly stolen. The machines, according to Williams’ former campaign manager, Seth Weathers, were used for mining cryptocurrency, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Weathers described Williams’ indictment as a “political witch hunt.”

The indictment did not mention what ultimately happened to the servers, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Williams’ attorney said his client is expected to leave jail “soon” after posting bond and said he “looks forward to his day in court.”

“It is a one-sided story presented to a group of people,” Williams’ attorney, AJ Richman, reportedly said of the indictment, “with the accused being unable to respond.”

Williams, who placed last among five Republican gubernatorial primary candidates, briefly made headlines after he hit the campaign trail with his “deportation bus tour.” The grey-coloured bus was covered in several controversial signs, including “FOLLOW ME TO MEXICO” and “FILL THIS BUS WITH ILLEGALS.”

“We’re not just gonna track ’em, watch them roam around our state,” Williams said, referring to undocumented immigrants, in a campaign video. “We’re going to put ’em on this bus and send them home.”

“If you’re as tired as I am with politicians that do nothing but talk, and you want to see this bus filled with illegals, vote Michael Williams,” he said.

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