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Tuesday, April 16, 2013 - 12:09pm

Ex-UGA Coach Jim Donnan Indicted

Federal prosecutors Tuesday unsealed an 85 count indictment against former University of Georgia head football coach Jim Donnan and his business partner, Gregory Crabtree. The charges of fraud, conspiracy, and money laundering stem from an $80 million Ponzi scheme the pair allegedly ran from 2007 to 2010.

At a news conference in Macon, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia Michael Moore said Donnan used his fame and connections to lure investors into a fake business.

"Mr. Donnan directed payments to himself, realizing a personal gain in the scheme of almost $8.5 million. He also directed payments to his family members who realized a total gain of more than $1.3 million," Moore said.

Each of the charges carries a hefty prison sentence.

In the same news conference, Moore presented an indictment in a different case involving seven guards at Macon State Prison in Oglethorpe who face federal charges for allegedly beating inmates.

According the indictment, which was unsealed Monday, the guards were part of a Correctional Emergency Response Team (CERT) tasked with handling inmates who had themselves assaulted corrections officers.

"Following each assault, the CERT members escorted the inmate from the scene of the incident, ostensibly in order to take the inmate to medical for an evaluation following that incident," Moore said. "On the way to the medical however, the members stopped in a location that was not covered by the surveillance system and beat the inmates, some severely."

Three other guards have previously pleaded guilty to charges relating to the case. The prosecution of these seven is being handled by the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department in Washington.

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