Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) is returning more than $80,000 in campaign donations following an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation that found those donations had come from employees of two companies owned by a felon facing potential deportation.


Kingston, who's in a Senate primary runoff against businessman David Perdue (R), took $80,000 in contributions from employees, their family members, consultants and contractors of two companies linked to Khalid Satary, a Palestinian who served more than three years in federal prison for running a large-scale counterfeit operation in the Atlanta area.

Satary was released from prison in 2008 and federal officials have sought to deport him since, though they haven't been able to secure the travel documents from other countries necessary to send him back to the Middle East.

The donations came after the company's owners gave employees bonuses, asking them to donate most of those funds to Kingston, according to the AJC. Kingston's campaign says it will return the money.

"After reviewing this matter, we believe we are in full compliance with the law and federal elections regulations," Kingston spokesman Chris Crawford told the AJC. "Out of an abundance of caution, however, we are returning contributions associated with this event due to external factors brought to our attention by members of the media."

Kingston has led Perdue in the primary in recent polling.