Marilyn Mosby asks to travel during home detention to promote Mahogany Elite consulting company – Baltimore Sun

Marilyn Mosby asks to travel during home detention to promote Mahogany Elite consulting company – Baltimore Sun

One week after she began serving home detention, former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby is seeking permission to travel for a paid speaking gig in New Orleans that will help advance her consulting company, her lawyer wrote in a new court filing.

The federal probation office opposes the request because its policies prohibit travel during the first two months of a defendant’s supervised release, according to the filing.

Mosby, 44, is serving one year on home detention and two additional years of probation, her sentence after being convicted of perjury and mortgage fraud. Separate federal juries found Mosby guilty of the charges, agreeing with prosecutors that she lied to withdraw money from her city retirement account early and then submitted a false “gift letter” when she bought the second of two Florida vacation properties with the money.

Mosby began her electronic monitoring on June 20, after a brief delay because of the death of her grandmother in Massachusetts.

Now, Mosby wants to travel to New Orleans for a paid contract position at the Essence Festival of Culture. Her lawyer, Federal Public Defender James Wyda, wrote that the opportunity may help connect her with other speaking engagements.

“This event is crucial to advancing Ms. Mosby’s consulting company, Mahogany Elite Enterprises, LLC,” Wyda wrote. “Through this company, Ms. Mosby will be offering her services to speak on issues of race, justice, and equality impacting black women. Her background and expertise as a former State’s Attorney in Baltimore make her an ideal speaker to address these issues confronting black women.”

Black Star Network offered Mosby a position as a legal contributor covering the “Essence Community Impact Hub” program at the festival on July 6 and 7, Wyda wrote. The program will include a live podcast on the empowerment of Black women and other discussions about civil rights activism and economic empowerment, he wrote.

Mosby will receive a fee and a stipend from the Global Black Economic Forum for travel and lodging expenses, according to the motion.

While on home detention, Mosby is restricted to her residence except for work, education, religious services, medical treatment, child care or other activities approved by her probation officer. Wyda said the speaking engagement is an employment opportunity that Mosby should not have to miss.

“In particular, the Essence Festival (one of the largest and most influential African-American festivals in the country) will give her a platform to share her experience and insights with a broader audience, which in turn will likely lead to more paid speaking engagements for her business,” Wyda wrote.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office declined to comment on the request.

Mosby launched multiple “Mahogany Elite” businesses while she still was the city’s top prosecutor. The revelation that she had started the businesses during her term sparked intense scrutiny, and one of the companies, Mahogany Elite Travel, ultimately came to be part of her trial on perjury charges in November.

Prosecutors charged that Mosby falsely claimed to have suffered an “adverse financial consequence” related to the coronavirus pandemic in order to withdraw about $80,000 from her city retirement account early under the CARES Act, emergency legislation passed to ease the economic damage of the health crisis.

Mosby’s defense team argued that she qualified for the withdrawals because the travel company she planned to launch in 2020 had to be scrapped during the pandemic. The government countered that the business had no customers, income or records and effectively did not exist. Jurors found Mosby guilty of lying on the withdrawal forms.

At Mosby’s second trial, prosecutors alleged she made a series of false statements when she used the retirement withdrawals to purchase two Florida vacation properties: an eight-bedroom house near Disney World and a condo on the Gulf Coast.

Jurors acquitted Mosby of one count of mortgage fraud, related to the house near Disney, but found her guilty of the second count. The jury indicated that it found Mosby submitted a false “gift letter” claiming her then-husband, Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby, would provide $5,000 to help her close on the condo.

U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby spared Mosby prison time at her sentencing last month, overruling a request from prosecutors and federal sentencing guidelines that called for a short prison term.

Mosby is also appealing her convictions to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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