US Attorney Ron Machen's long-running investigation into campaign finance in DC elections has its latest character. Troy White, a New York City marketing executive, will appear in federal court today to face a single charge of neglecting to file corporate income taxes.
According to a criminal information filed yesterday, White allegedly failed to file tax returns for his company, Wytehouse Marketing Inc. over a four-year period between 2007 and 2011. Over that period, prosecutors say, White's firm recorded $1,058,506 in receipts, but did not submit $20,725 in income taxes.
How White's alleged tax problems tie into a campaign finance investigation that has dragged on for more than two years and ensnared multiple DC elected officials is not entirely clear from the criminal information document. But Machen's spokesman Bill Miller says White ties into the overall inquiry, and he does have connections to disgraced former DC Council member Michael A. Brown.
Machen's office has been looking into campaign donations made by individuals connected to Jeffrey Thompson, a former accounting executive and city contractor who is suspected of financing a $653,000 "shadow campaign" to help elect Mayor Vince Gray in 2010. Brown, who lost his 2012 re-election bid, pleaded guilty to bribery charges in June after admitting to taking over $55,000 in cash payments from federal agents posing as small business owners.
DC campaign finance records show that on October 10, 2008, White made two donations of $1,000 each to Brown's campaign. That happens to match the date and value of donations supposedly made by relatives of former Thompson employee Lee Calhoun, who pleaded guilty in June to making straw donations to several DC office-holders, including Gray.