- The Washington Times - Friday, February 7, 2014

Prosecutors are seeking more prison time for former D.C. Council member Michael A. Brown, alleging that he accepted $100,000 in secret donations for his 2008 campaign.

Brown is already facing more than three years in prison after admitting last year that he accepted $55,000 in bribes from undercover federal agents, but he could see six more months tacked onto his sentence on account of the latest revelations.

Documents filed in federal court Friday lay out a now familiar scheme for political fundraising in the District - one in which a shadow financier gave $100,000 to Brown’s 2008 campaign for his at large seat by funneling the money through other means and skirting campaign finance reporting requirements.

The secret financier told Brown that he would not fund his “political campaign committee in a public manner based on the contemporaneous political dynamics,” according to theamended plea agreement filed on Friday. The money was instead funneled through political operative Eugenia Clarke Harris, who already pleaded guilty to taking part in a secret and illegal effort that funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars to Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s 2010 campaign.

Harris has previously been linked to prolific D.C. political donor Jeffrey E. Thompson, who in turn is widely thought to be the donor behind the mayor’s shadow campaign. Mr. Thompson has neither been named in court documents nor has he been criminally charged.

As part of Brown’s amended plea deal, prosecutors are seeking to increase his sentence from 37 to 43 months in prison but do not intend to file additional charges against him. As part of his plea agreement, Brown has been cooperating with prosecutors.

It was previously disclosed that Brown accepted $20,000 from Harris for his unsuccessful 2007 campaign in Ward 4. In that instance, the money again came from an unnamed “co-conspirator 1.”

The donations to Brown’s 2008 campaign came less than a month before the election, during a time that Brown’s campaign was having having financial difficulties and had bounced at least one check.

Brown met with Harris, at which point he shared a list of his expected campaign expenses, court documents state.

Less than a week before the election, “co-conspirator 1” directed Harris to wire $35,000 to a vendor to cover payment for services provided to Brown’s campaign. The day before the election, Harris cut a check from her company Details International to Brown for $44,150.

Brown cashed the check and gave it to a campaign consultant to pay for get out the vote efforts.

Brown’s attorney could not be immediately reached for comment.

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