Senior federal judge pleads guilty to drug charges

Senior US District Judge Jack Camp had been a federal judge for more than 22 years and has now resigned from the bench.

Zachary D. Porter/Fulton County (Ga.) Daily Report/AP
In this Nov. 20, 2008 photo, Senior US District Judge Jack Camp poses for a photo in Atlanta. Camp, who was arrested on charges that he bought and used drugs, pleaded guilty on Friday to drug charges.

A federal judge in Atlanta pleaded guilty on Friday to charges that he illegally possessed cocaine, marijuana, and Roxycodone.

Senior US District Judge Jack Camp admitted to charges that he possessed the drugs and provided drugs to a person he knew was convicted a drug crime. He also admitted that he gave an exotic dancer, with whom he allegedly used the drugs, a US-government-issued laptop computer for her personal use.

The jurist was arrested on Oct. 1 at an Atlanta-area strip club after he and the exotic dancer purchased a quantity of drugs from an undercover operative working with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

What the judge didn’t know is that the exotic dancer was recording their conversations and at some point began cooperating with law-enforcement officials.

Mr. Camp had been a federal judge for more than 22 years after being appointed by President Reagan. He was the chief judge in the Northern District of Georgia from 2006 to 2008 and assumed senior status at the end of 2008. He has now resigned from the bench.

According to federal court documents, the judge first met the exotic dancer at the Goldrush Showbar, an Atlanta strip club, last spring. The judge purchased a private dance from the dancer in the VIP area of the club.

Camp returned to the club the next day to purchase another private dance from the same exotic dancer. He later paid for sex with her, according to an FBI affidavit.

The two began to share drugs, the affidavit says. On multiple occasions, Camp paid for sex with the exotic dancer and provided money for her to purchase drugs for them to use together, the documents say.

At one point, Camp followed the dancer to a location where she was to buy drugs. He remained outside, armed with a handgun, according to court documents.

At the time of his arrest on Oct. 1, FBI agents recovered two firearms in Camp’s car. One was a .380 Sig Sauer P238. The other was a Colt MK IV Series 80.

The Sig Sauer was found with a loaded magazine, a round in the chamber, and the gun’s hammer cocked.

When he was arrested, federal authorities charged the judge with possession of a firearm during a drug offense. That charge appears to have been dropped.

The case is being presided over by Senior US District Judge Thomas Hogan, a federal judge in Washington. Sentencing is set for March 4. He could serve up to four years in prison, but guidelines suggest a prison sentence of four to 10 months.

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