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Report: Federal Grand Jury Investigating Nick & Marilyn Mosby

Baltimore City State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby and City Council President Nick Mosby.
Office of the Baltimore City State's Attorney/Office of the City Council President
Baltimore City State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby and City Council President Nick Mosby.

The Baltimore Sun has reported that federal prosecutors have begun a criminal investigation into Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby and State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, citing a grand jury subpoena.

Sources who are not authorized to speak on the record tell WYPR that FBI agents entered City Hall on Wednesday.

The federal agency and the U.S. Attorney’s office have subpoenaed the couple’s business records and the State’s Attorney’s campaign, theSunreports. Investigators reportedly requested a host of financial documents “tax returns, bank statements, credit card statements, loan documents and canceled checks.”

“They subpoenaed Mosby’s campaign treasurer and requested records tracing back to 2014, some related to the Mosbys’ private travel and consulting businesses,” the article reads.

Representatives for the Democrats did not respond to WYPR’s requests for comment.

Nick Mosby became Council President last year, after representing Baltimore in the Maryland House of Delegates. Marilyn Mosby is in her second term as the city’s top prosecutor.

Their lawyer A. Scott Bolden issued a statement to the Sun calling the investigation “a political witch hunt in its purest form.”

“My clients are progressive change agents, making them unfair targets of unnecessary scrutiny by federal investigators. Nevertheless, I can assure you and the people of Baltimore, they have done nothing illegal, inappropriate or unlawful,” he told the Sun.

The newspaper reported that Union Baptist Church “received a federal grand jury subpoena seeking information about whether Nick Mosby had made contributions there.” The church’s attorney, Robert Dashiell, told the Sun that Nick Mosby had made a “negligible donation.”

“I spend more at Starbucks,” the attorney said.

The political power couple, who often appear in each other’s campaign literature, have drawn criticism for a slew of various business and financial dealings within the last year.

In October, Fox45 reported that the IRS has filed a lien against the couple for $45,000 worth of unpaid back taxes from 2014 through 2016. Nick Mosby told the station he had been in “ongoing conversations with the IRS for five years about the tax consequences of an early withdrawal from my retirement savings plan, which I did to support unplanned expenses after a series of family tragedies.”

Baltimore City Inspector General Isabel Mercedes Cumming published an investigation of Marilyn Mosby’s business and travel activities that found she was out of the office for 144 work days in 2018 and 2019 and did not disclose 15 out-of-town trips to the city’s spending board. The February report came at Mosby’s request, after the news site Baltimore Brew reported on alleged discrepancies in her travel and financial disclosure forms.

Cumming found that while the State’s Attorney did not explicitly misspend any city funds, she did break administrative rules and stretch ethical boundaries by not being fully transparent about the extent of her travels.

After the report dropped, Baltimore City Solicitor Jim Shea released an opinion that found no fault with Mosby’s actions and noted the city’s travel policies for elected officials are murky and inconsistently applied. Mayor Brandon Scott announced he would commission a workgroup on travel ethics.

The Brew reported last month that the State’s Attorney’s campaign committee paid $3,250 to two attorneys to represent her in the city Inspector General’s investigation, noting that “Maryland law broadly bans the use of campaign funds for “the personal use or the personal benefit of a candidate.”

Cummings received heat from supporters of the State’s Attorney. The NAACP organized a protest outside of City Hall with several prominent officials, including former Mayor Jack Young, to raise concerns about Cumming’s office and “what appears to be disparate and biased treatment of African American leaders.”

Emily Sullivan is a city hall reporter at WYPR, where she covers all things Baltimore politics. She joined WYPR after reporting for NPR’s national airwaves. There, she was a reporter for NPR’s news desk, business desk and presidential conflicts of interest team. Sullivan won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigation into a Trump golf course's finances alongside members of the Embedded team. She has also won awards from the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association for her use of sound and feature stories. She has provided news analysis on 1A, The Takeaway, Here & Now and All Things Considered.