Ron Brown's Son Gets Probation
Receives three years' worth for illegal donations to Kennedy's 1994 campaign
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Nov. 21) -- The son of the late Commerce Secretary Ron Brown received three years' probation and a $5,000 fine for illegally contributing to Sen. Ted Kennedy's 1994 campaign.
Michael A. Brown, a Washington lawyer, pled guilty in August to misdemeanor charges that he had exceeded the $2,000 limit on individual donations to a federal candidate.
He must also perform 150 hours of community service and pay an additional $7,818 for the costs of his probation.
Brown, 32, gave $2,000 to his secretary and $1,000 apiece to two co-workers which they then gave to Kennedy's campaign. Brown himself received the money from Oklahoma fund-raisers Gene and Nora Lum, who have admitted they laundered $50,000 through "straw donors" including Brown.
"Mr. Brown would like to have the court believe this incident... was due to an over-enthusiasm for Sen. Kennedy's campaign," said Justice Department prosecutor Jonathan Biran. But, Biran said, "he knew what the rules were regarding personal contributions. In 1994, he decided that on two occasions these rules didn't have to apply to him."
In a statement at the sentencing, Brown told the judge, "I stand before you accepting full responsibility for my actions."
"I expect to move forward with renewed energy in meeting my court-ordered obligations and in advancing the goals of education and opportunity championed by my father and to which I have committed myself," he said.
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Friday Nov. 21, 1997
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