Appeals court upholds convictions

A federal appeals court on Monday affirmed the 2005 convictions of former state Rep. Robin Williams, Augusta druggist Duncan Fordham and former Atlanta Braves pitcher Rick Camp.

The three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued its decision just five days after hearing oral arguments for the three men, convicted of scheming to bilk an Augusta mental health center out of millions of dollars.

According to the four-page opinion, the appeals court judges found no merit in any of the issues that defense attorneys contended unfairly sent the men to prison.

Mr. Williams, who was convicted of the most crimes in connection with his involvement in the Community Mental Health Center of East Central Georgia, was sentenced to serve 120 months in prison.

Mr. Fordham, whose Duncan Drugs obtained a lucrative contract because of Mr. Williams' dealings and who kicked back a third of those profits to Mr. Williams, was sentenced to serve 52 months in prison.

Mr. Camp, who received more than $50,000 from the center for bogus lobbying work, was sentenced to serve 37 months in prison.

Two others convicted in the case were not involved in appeals.

The center's former executive director ,C. Michael Brockman, died before serving his 72-month prison sentence, and M. Chad Long, grandson of former Georgia House Speaker Tom Murphy, did not appeal his 33-month prison sentence.