DA Seth Williams Indicted on Additional Corruption Charges

Yesterday’s charges bring the total count to 29.

Seth Williams at a February 10, 2017, press conference. Photo by Matt Rourke/AP

Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams was first indicted on 23 corruption charges in March – and just yesterday, prosecutors added additional fraud charges, bringing the total count to 29.

Federal authorities allege that Williams, 50, used campaign funds on several personal expenditures, including more than $677 at a New Year’s Eve party in 2013; about $777 for a birthday dinner for his girlfriend in 2014; almost $900 on massages, facials, gift cards and fitness classes in 2014 and 2015; and about $2,674 for a birthday dinner for his girlfriend in 2015. 

In addition, authorities allege that Williams defrauded the Friends of Seth Williams political action committee of at least $4,036, which he allegedly obtained by depositing a check written for a political consultant into his own personal bank account. Williams is also accused of repeatedly using vehicles obtained through the city and through a federal program for his personal use.

Williams is charged in the superseding indictment with 11 counts of travel and use of interstate facilities to promote and facilitate bribery, two counts of Hobbs Act extortion under color of official right, two counts of honest services wire fraud, 12 counts of wire fraud and two counts of mail fraud.

Williams’s trial is set for May 31st. The state Supreme Court moved to suspend his law license in April; that suspension will go into effect on May 13th. He has chosen to remain in his position but shift largely into an administrative role while his chief deputy, Kathleen Martinhandles day-to-day operations.

Williams announced in January that he wouldn’t run for reelection. Eight candidates are vying to take his spot.

Follow @ClaireSasko on Twitter.

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