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FBI agents note disclosure lapses in Currie trial

FBI agents testified Thursday about financial disclosure lapses in a federal bribery case against state Sen. Ulysses Currie, who is charged with selling his influence in Annapolis to do favors for a grocery store chain.

Prosecutors focused on state financial disclosure forms in which the senator failed to disclose he had been working for Shoppers Food Warehouse between 2003 and 2007. Currie was paid more than $245,000 during the period, allegedly to help Shoppers get traffic lights installed at two stores, transfer a liquor license and other matters requiring government approval.

But attorneys for Currie noted that his wife’s income also wasn’t reported in the forms, even though it was supposed to be. Attorney Joseph Evans also noted that investigators did not search back to the senator’s financial disclosure forms beyond the period in question to examine how accurate those forms were.

Currie’s lawyers contend the omissions were due to faulty bookkeeping, not intentional wrongdoing.

Special Agent Steven Quisenberry, the lead agent in the investigation, said investigators were focused on whether Currie was hiding his financial relationship with Shoppers, not other potential omissions.

Currie is accused of bribery, conspiracy, extortion and false statement charges.

Quisenberry also testified about an interview he had in 2008 with Currie at his Prince George’s County home, just before agents searched his house. The agent said when Currie was asked about work he had done for Shoppers, he responded he had only done some work as a consultant on minority employment.

Prosecutors then focused on documents seized at Currie’s home, including pages from a day planner, that allude to work relating to a grocery store at Mondawmin Mall in Baltimore and other stores in the state.