Do You Expect Me To Talk?
The D.C. Council is moving to try to force one of the subjects of its parks contracts probe to be more forthcoming with special investigator Robert Trout.
In pursuit of details on the murky contracts that have enriched Mayor Adrian Fenty's fraternity pals, Trout wants Banneker Ventures' Omar Karim to start talking about his law firm, Liberty Law Group. Liberty Law made payments of $600,000 to Liberty Industries, which is owned by another Fenty friend, Sinclair Skinner, the Post has reported.
During his testimony before Trout in April, Skinner said those payments were not related to the parks contracts. Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr. said Karim, who has already been deposed by Trout, is singing the same tune. So today, Thomas asked the council to reconvene Thursday to consider legislation that would allow Trout to get a court order compelling Karim to answer questions and turn over records related to Liberty Law. LL has a call into Karim's attorney, A. Scott Bolden, and will update as necessary. Chances are D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray—who, after all, has an election to win—won't stand in the way if Thomas wants the council to chew on the parks investigation a bit more.
After the jump, read Thomas' letter to Gray:
I am writing to request an Additional Legislative Meeting for this Thursday, August 12, 2010, to consider the, “Enforcement of Subpoena of Omar Karim Resolution of 2010.” The Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation has scheduled an Additional Committee Meeting on August 12th to consider and vote on the measure prior to its consideration by the Council.
After conferring with the Committee’s Special Counsel pursuant to the, “Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation Budget Transparency Investigation Resolution of 2009,” it was determined that compelling the testimony of Mr. Omar Karim, Founder of Banneker Ventures, LLC, is vital to the integrity and completion of the investigative report. This resolution will authorize the Special Counsel to address this matter in Superior Court.