- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 29, 2005

D.C. Council member Marion Barry yesterday pleaded guilty to not filing income taxes for 2000.

Mr. Barry, 69, appeared in U.S. District Court, where he entered guilty pleas to two misdemeanor counts of willful failure to file and failure to make a return for the 2000 tax year. The pleas were part of an agreement reached with federal prosecutors in which he acknowledged not filing taxes from 1999 through 2004.

“There is some substantial amount of income that was paid,” federal prosecutor James W. Cooper said.

Mr. Barry conceded in court that he was not sure exactly how much he earned in the first six years after he stepped down as mayor, but according to court papers, New York-based investment firms paid him $534,000.

“I have no reason to dispute the information which came from the W2s and 1099s filed by my employers,” Mr. Barry said during the 35-minute hearing.

The former four-term mayor, who was elected to the D.C. Council last November, has agreed to file all necessary tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service, the D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue and any other required tax authority.

The government also maintains its right to levy fines and penalties regarding the outstanding taxes.

“This is the first step in resolving this matter. In the meantime, I’m going to go back to work for Ward 8 people and the citizens of the District of Columbia,” Mr. Barry said as he left the same courthouse where in 1990 he was convicted on a misdemeanor drug charge.

Mr. Barry has been ordered to inform federal probation officials of any plans to leave the area before his Jan. 18 sentencing. While he faces potential penalties of up to 18 months in prison and fines of $30,000, the plea agreement recommends probation.

At city hall, requests for comment were generally declined. Council Chairwoman Linda W. Cropp said through a spokesman that the case is Mr. Barry’s personal business. Other council members expressed a similar sentiment.

City Administrator Robert C. Bobb told the Associated Press that a decision has been made in Mayor Anthony A. Williams’ office to not talk about Mr. Barry’s tax case.

Mr. Barry receives $92,605 a year in his council post. He has served 21 years in city government, including two previous council terms.



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