Mark Segraves, wtop.com
WASHINGTON - Federal investigators will not be charging former D.C. Council Chairman Kwame Brown with any additional crimes related to his 2008 campaign.
Just hours after Brown's brother, Che Brown, appeared in federal court to plead guilty to a bank fraud charge that was result of that investigation, U.S. Attorney Ron Machen released a statement saying the investigation was over. But Brown's legal problems may not be behind him just yet. The statement indicates Brown could face civil charges.
"The closure of our criminal investigation should not be interpreted as a clean bill of health for the 2008 Kwame Brown campaign," The statement reads. "The completion of our investigation paves the way for the D.C. Board of Elections to resume public proceedings on the civil complaint filed against the Kwame Brown campaign last year."
A spokesperson for the Board of Elections could not comment on the statement until a review by the Board's General Counsel.
Che Brown pleaded guilty to one count of felony bank fraud. Brown told a federal judge he falsified an application for a mortgage modification after he defaulted on his home loan in 2009. According to prosecutors and Brown's attorney, A. Scott Bolden, the bank has not lost any money on the loan.
Earlier this year, Kwame Brown pleaded guilty to a similar charge of bank fraud after resigning from office. He is currently serving six months of home detention.
Both bank fraud charges against the brothers were the result of that investigation.
"This should bring an end to this sordid investigation," Bolden said after the plea hearing. "Their investigation into campaign fraud and theft remains unfounded."
Bolden said his client has submitted thousands of pages of documents that show where the more than $200,000 in campaigns funds were spent. When asked if his client would make those documents available to the public, Bolden said, "We will consider that."
While Thursday's plea brings to an end the 18-month investigation into Brown's campaign, a court hearing Wednesday revealed prosecutors aren't finished investigating Mayor Vincent Gray's 2010 campaign. A judge delayed sentencing of former Gray campaign advisor Thomas Gore until March after prosecutors said his cooperation was still vital to their ongoing probe into what prosecutors have called a shadow campaign that deceived the voting public.
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