- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 12, 2011

Before D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. faced a $1 million civil suit filed by the D.C. attorney general over questionable fundraising and spending by his not-a-charity Team Thomas, he faced another civil lawsuit seeking to compel him to pay back a modest sum of a few thousand dollars in student loans.

The Washington Times reported in March that a U.S. District Court judge had reinstated a suit filed in 2006 and dismissed in 2009 attempting to force the Ward 5 Democrat to make good on $16,000 in years-old loans and the collected interest and penalties.

The student-loan case suggests a valuable lesson to be learned in light of disclosures made as part of the Team Thomas case.

Here’s some context assembled from court papers filed in the student-loan case along with information culled from court filings in the Team Thomas case:

March 10, 2006: Case filed to recover $16,000 in student loans, interest, penalties from Mr. Thomas.

April 8, 2006:Mr. Thomas is served.

Jan. 2, 2007:Mr. Thomas sworn in as council member.

April 16, 2007:Mr. Thomas charges $690 to Team Thomas credit card at Love nightclub.

July 10, 2007: Student-loan case continued indefinitely.

Oct. 29, 2007:Mr. Thomas charges $1,185 to Team Thomas credit card at Bali Hai Golf Club in Las Vegas.

March 10, 2008: Status hearing. Neither Mr. Thomas nor his lawyer (whom the court papers note was not a member of the D.C. Bar) show up.

April 2, 2008:Mr. Thomas charges $2,669 to Team Thomas credit card at Gogo Vacations.

April 28, 2009:Mr. Thomas charges $1,073 to Team Thomas credit card at Pebble Beach Golf Links in Pebble Beach, Calif.

June 1, 2009: Student-loan case dismissed for lack of activity.

Sept. 12, 2009:Mr. Thomas uses $58,575 in charitable grant funds paid through a for-profit company he controlled to buy a 2008 Audi Q7 4.2 Premium Quattro sport utility vehicle.

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