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Second Thompson Associate Pleads Guilty In Massive Straw Donation Scheme

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Two associates of D.C. businessman Jeffrey Thompson have pleaded guilty this month to participating in a straw donation scheme.
Two associates of D.C. businessman Jeffrey Thompson have pleaded guilty this month to participating in a straw donation scheme.

A second associate of businessman Jeffrey Thompson admitted on Monday that he was reimbursed for political donations, pleading guilty in federal court to a misdemeanor campaign finance violation.

Philadelphia contractor Stanley Straughter's consulting firm worked for Jeffrey Thompson, the former owner of a well-connected D.C. accounting firm.

Straughter was part of a large network of donors who contributed to candidates for federal, state and local offices, often the maximum amount on the same day. According to prosecutors, Straughter oversaw $130,000 in straw donations to a variety of candidates; another donor affiliated with Thompson pleaded guilty last week to a similar charge and admitted he was reimbursed for $160,000 in contributions.

A statement released this month by Thompson's former accounting firm stated that the former owner "aggressively solicited" donations from employees and their family members. U.S. Attorney for D.C. Ron Machen referred to the firm last week as an "assembly line for illegal campaign contributions."

Thompson is also suspected of funneling $650,000 in illegal funds into D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray's 2010 campaign. He has not been charged with a crime and sold his ownership stake at the accounting firm.

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