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Accountabilityby Mark Reutter11:30 amJul 29, 20200

Former state investigator asks for probe of Marilyn Mosby’s travel and consulting business

Baltimore’s State’s Attorney initially failed to disclose three companies she formed in 2019 amid numerous out-of-town trips

Above: Marilyn Mosby (center top) in Berlin last year, studying the German prison system with other prosecutors. (@fairandjustprosecution, Instagram)

A retired public corruption investigator has filed a complaint with the State Prosecutor against Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, requesting a probe into her tardy disclosure of her travel and consulting businesses.

James Cabezas, who spent three decades as Maryland’s chief investigator of public corruption, said he asked State Prosecutor Charlton T. Howard III to “initiate a criminal probe of alleged perjurious filing of [Mosby’s] state ethics financial disclosure statement.”

Omitting information on mandatory disclosure forms can result in perjury charges, if prosecutors can prove that a government employee or elected official knew they were required to report business interests and did not.

Last month, Baltimore’s former mayor, Catherine Pugh, pleaded guilty to perjury after she failed to disclose her ownership of Healthy Holly LLC on ethics forms while she was a state senator. Cabezas noted that he had called for the state investigation that led to her guilty plea.

Pugh is now serving a three-year prison sentence in Alabama on tax evasion and other federal charges stemming from the sale of children’s books through Healthy Holly LLC.

Five Month Lapse

In an interview, Cabezas said he made the request to the prosecutor because he was concerned that Mosby had initially failed to disclose three companies she had formed on her 2019 ethics statement.

The Brew reported on the existence of the companies as part of a wider look at Mosby’s overseas and domestic travel. Last year, Baltimore’s top law enforcement official spent 67 days out of the office at conferences and workshops, while pocketing her full $240,000-a-year salary.

Five months after the ethics statement was filed, Mosby submitted an amendment to the State Ethics Commission listing the companies.

The amended statement was made several days after The Brew began examining her travel activities and downloading her ethics reports, which triggers notification to the filer.

“I am concerned that one of our top political figures is absent from her job while Baltimore City is facing soaring crime rates”  – Kinji Scott.

While Mosby’s spokesperson blamed a former staff member and the Covid pandemic for the prosecutor’s delay in reporting the companies, Cabezas said, “I feel certain there is, at minimum, a technical violation” of state law.

“Should the prosecutor’s office agree to undertake such an inquiry, it seems to me that investigators would search for evidence to support the theory that the omission of the travel companies was not simply an innocent error,” Cabezas said.

In Maryland, perjury is a felony crime and carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.

A representative for the state prosecutor said the office would neither confirm nor deny an investigation of Mosby.

Second Call for Probe

Kinji Scott, a Baltimore minister, has also asked the prosecutor’s office to examine Mosby’s travel and financial disclosures, according to Fox45 News.

“I am concerned that one of our top political figures is absent from her job while Baltimore City is facing soaring crime rates,” Scott wrote in a July 20 letter addressed to Howard.

“If Mrs. Mosby solicited for her company or mentioned it to groups and nonprofits to get donations, that is a violation. . . Even if Mrs. Mosby never did any business with someone else, if she used the company to book travel for herself and/or her husband and daughters, that is a violation,” Scott alleged.

Last week, Mosby invited the Baltimore Inspector General to investigate her travel activities, saying she wanted an “independent authority” to review what she has condemned in Facebook postings as misleading and prejudicial reporting by The Brew.

BREW’S COVERAGE OF MOSBY TRAVELS:

The Peripatetic Prosecutor: Marilyn Mosby took 23 trips in 2018 and 2019, accepting $30,000 in reimbursements (7/16/20)

Marilyn Mosby answers few questions about her travel company (7/21/20)

Mosby asks Inspector General to review her travel and private businesses following Brew reporting (7/23/20)

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