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Former Prince George’s County Housing Director James Johnson Sentenced for Federal Extortion
Dept Of Justice ^ | April 16, 2012 | U.S. Attorney’s Office District of Maryland

Posted on 04/16/2012 6:54:23 PM PDT by Larry381

GREENBELT, MD—United States District Judge Peter J. Messitte sentenced former Director of Prince George’s County Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) James Edward Johnson, age 67, of Temple Hills, Maryland, today to 37 months in prison, followed by two years of supervised release, for conspiracy to commit extortion. Judge Messitte also entered an order requiring James Johnson to pay a fine of $25,000 and to forfeit $46,300 that was seized from his safe deposit box.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Special Agent in Charge Eric C. Hylton of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, Washington, D.C. Field Office.

In September 2009, James Johnson was appointed to serve as the Director of DHCD, which administered the HOME Investment Partnerships program to provide federal grants to states and localities to fund the construction, purchase, and/or rehabilitation of affordable housing for rent or home ownership. As Housing Director, James Johnson had authority to recommend which developers would receive HOME funds for development projects in the county and to grant the developers exceptions from regulatory requirements.

According to his guilty plea, from 2006 to at least October 19, 2010, James Johnson conspired with former County Executive Jack Johnson, developer Patrick Ricker, physician/developer Mirza Baig, and other business persons and public officials in the county to commit extortion by public officials obtaining things of value, including campaign donations, checks, and money.

In exchange for the bribes, James Johnson and other county officials performed and agreed to perform favorable official actions for Baig, Ricker, and other developers and their companies in the county. The official acts included obtaining a waiver of a HOME Program regulation, securing millions of dollars in HOME funds; assisting in the acquisition of surplus property and land from the county for development by certain developers; providing the conspirators with non-public county information; and obtaining necessary state and local approvals and permits for certain developments in the county.

James Johnson was paid between $400,000 and $1 million in bribes in connection with the scheme.

Jack B. Johnson, age 63, of Mitchellville, Maryland, was sentenced to 87 months in prison for his leadership role in the extortion conspiracy and tampering with a witness and evidence.

Dr. Mirza Hussain Baig, age 68, of Burtonsville, Maryland, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit extortion in connection with paying bribes to Jack Johnson and James Johnson. Patrick Q. Ricker, age 53, of Bowie, Maryland, pleaded guilty to his participation in the conspiracy and to tax evasion. Baig and Ricker face a maximum sentence of five years in prison and are scheduled to be sentenced on May 3 and June 11, 2012, respectively.

Fifteen of 16 defendants have been convicted in the related investigations of corruption in Prince George’s County.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the FBI and IRS-CI for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys James A. Crowell IV, A. David Copperthite and Sujit Raman, who prosecuted these cases.

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; News/Current Events; US: Maryland
KEYWORDS: corruption; fbi

1 posted on 04/16/2012 6:54:37 PM PDT by Larry381
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To: Larry381
See also:Johnson
2 posted on 04/16/2012 6:57:32 PM PDT by Larry381 ("Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.")
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To: Larry381; GreyFriar

I am pleasantly surprised that they were convicted.

3 posted on 04/16/2012 7:06:46 PM PDT by zot
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To: Larry381

“Jack Johnson said prosecutors wanted to put minorities in jail”

Has anyone told Reverends 1 and 2 about the Prince Georges white devils problem?

4 posted on 04/16/2012 7:20:42 PM PDT by tumblindice (Our new, happy lives.)
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To: tumblindice

DIMs I might add. The only thing new here is that they were held accountable.

5 posted on 04/16/2012 7:23:01 PM PDT by hal ogen (1st Amendment or Reeducation Camp?)
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To: Larry381

Over $900,000 for 3 years light duty with free room and board? Crime does pay.

6 posted on 04/16/2012 7:23:05 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: Larry381

What is it with corrupt Democrat dipsticks named James Johnson???

7 posted on 04/16/2012 7:26:11 PM PDT by rlmorel (A knife in the chest from a unapologetic liberal is preferable to a knife in the back from a RINO.)
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To: Larry381; Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Freak State ping!

I'm disappointed they got off so light - I've seen Mesitte in action many times - from the time he was a Montgomery County Circuit Court judge to the time he has sat on the Federal bench - he is known for heavy sentences. Maybe he's getting too old to do the job any more.

Nos genuflectitur ad non princeps sed Princeps Pacem!

Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far; The LORD hath called me from the womb; from the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name. (Isaiah 49:1 KJV)

8 posted on 04/16/2012 7:27:38 PM PDT by ConorMacNessa (HM/2 USN, 3/5 Marines RVN 1969 - St. Michael the Archangel defend us in Battle!)
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To: Larry381

No mention of party??

Must be a Democrat

9 posted on 04/16/2012 7:49:09 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: PAR35
Judge Messitte also entered an order requiring James Johnson to pay a fine of $25,000 and to forfeit $46,300 that was seized from his safe deposit box.

Wow. Lets take millions and pay a $25,000 fine. jeesh

10 posted on 04/16/2012 7:52:01 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
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To: Larry381
I used to live in Prince George's County, so I can't wait to see what will happen if they get their big casino operations at National Harbor.

The graft then will make all these guys look like pikers.

11 posted on 04/16/2012 10:38:02 PM PDT by VanShuyten ("a shadow...draped nobly in the folds of a gorgeous eloquence.")
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To: Larry381; Abundy; Albion Wilde; AlwaysFree; AnnaSASsyFR; bayliving; BFM; cindy-true-supporter; ...

Business as usual in P.G.?

Maryland “Freak State” PING!

12 posted on 04/17/2012 3:04:52 AM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks (Occupy DC General Assembly: We are Marxist tools. WE ARE MARXIST TOOLS!)
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To: Larry381


The criminality and corruption - so typical and predictable.

Someone needs to make a list of criminal indictments on “current” politicians, starting with the locals.

Let’s compare. I’m betting more Dems than Repubs.

13 posted on 04/17/2012 10:28:22 AM PDT by the OlLine Rebel (Common sense is an uncommon virtue./Technological progress cannot be legislated.)
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To: Tolerance Sucks Rocks
Yup - this is the same county with that stellar state legislator who attempted to halt bear hunting in Western Maryland. Until one of our fine reps back home agreed with to it with the provision that we export all the spared bruins to back her county and release them in her neighborhood, just to get an idea of what Almost Maryland has been putting up with. She suddenly STFU over the issue after that. Go figure. LOL

"As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

--H.L. Mencken, The Baltimore Evening Sun, July 26, 1920

14 posted on 04/17/2012 8:15:13 PM PDT by Viking2002 ( "I didn't just write 'Wango Tango'...........I MEANT it." - Ted Nugent)
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