Former Baltimore Mayor Indicted on Eleven Federal Charges
Former Baltimore mayor Democrat Catherine Pugh was recently indicted on not one, not two, not five, but eleven federal charges. One story reporting on the recent charges against Pugh stated the charges include “…fraud, tax evasion, and conspiracy… .” And yes, it is as bad as it sounds.
Another story covering these Federal indictments gave some more details of charges contained within the indictments. If someone was to get the unfortunate news of having one or two indictments served to them, that would be a bad day. Catherine Pugh received eleven!
According to this story, regarding those tax evasion charges, “In 2016… when she was a state senator and ran for mayor, she told the Internal Revenue Service she had made just $31,000. In fact, her income was more than $322,000 that year…,” and as the story aptly reported, that is roughly $100,000 in taxes the government never saw. Although that seems hard to fathom, on many levels, this story wasn’t done detailing other charges of the indictments.
As bad as those charges sound, the charges of conspiracy are worse. Based on our story, Pugh’s self-published children’s book was the foundation for a money scandal that was used for personal profit and gain. The story said that “prosecutors allege Pugh defrauded area businesses and nonprofit organizations with nearly $800,000 in sales of her Healthy Holly books to unlawfully enrich herself, promote her political career and illegally fund her campaign for mayor.”
Further details of our story elaborated, “though her customers ordered more than 100,000 copies of the books, the indictment says Pugh failed to print thousands of copies, double-sold others and took some to use for self-promotion. Pugh, 69, used the profits to buy a house, pay down debt, and make illegal straw donations to her campaign… .”
It would be amiss to not point out that this issue with paying taxes, evading taxes, and just being generally good law-abiding citizens seems to be a continuing problem for the Dems lately. This particular story, however, is a doozy!
Are you wondering what kind of charges comes with that gross kind of illegal and scandalous activity? The story continued to say that the potential sentences add up to a total of 175 years in prison if found guilty and given the maximum sentencing. The story also said that “prosecutors are seeking to seize $769,688 of her profits, along with her current home in Ashburton, which they allege she bought and renovated with fraudulently obtained funds.”
In layman terms what that means is that the government is ticked off and they are coming after her with both barrels blazing. Of course, there was no immediate comment from Pugh or her attorney.
There was a time when we held our public officials to a higher standard, we expected them to be the example of an upright and contributing citizen. Today, we almost expect to hear news of theft, impropriety, or corruption. The U.S. Attorney scolded Pugh on these very grounds saying, “There are many victims in this case… the victims are all of us. The taxpayers. The people of Baltimore who expect and deserve integrity from their public officials.”
We definitely don’t expect our elected officials to lie to us, steal from us, and mislead us – or do we? That may be the saddest indictment of all. How many of you reading this are angry or shocked? Right. And that is a problem.
Maybe it is time to start holding those we hand the keys to, to a higher level of conduct and responsiblity? Perhaps if U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur was serious about his comments, then he will drop the hammer on Pugh if she is found guilty – on any of these accounts. If the other members of our oft-questioned government see that this type of behavior has real consequences, it might change the current status-quo in Washington D.C.
It would be nice if this was all somehow a combination of mistakes, mistaken identity, and erroneous charges, but that isn’t likely. Catherine Pugh was recently indicted on not a few but eleven federal charges… and we really aren’t shocked, are we?