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Ex-Pugh aide’s swearing-in for House delayed following indictment

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh.

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh

The swearing-in to the House of Delegates of a former legislative aide to then-Sen. Catherine Pugh has been delayed indefinitely due to charges that he violated state laws related to campaign contributions.

Gary Brown Jr. was scheduled to be sworn-in to fill the seat vacated by Barbara Robinson, who replaced Pugh in the Senate after Pugh was elected Baltimore mayor. A statement released by House Speaker Michael E. Busch said that event has now been postponed due to the charges.

State Prosecutor Emmet C. Davitt announced in a statement Monday that Brown has been indicted on several counts of election law violations stemming from alleged illegal contributions to the Committee to Elect Catherine E. Pugh. Pugh took office last month.

The charges allege that Brown deposited cash into the bank accounts of his mother, stepfather and brother between January and April 2016, then immediately contributed that money in their names to the Pugh campaign. Prosecutors allege that Brown’s contributions totaled $18,000, but the maximum allowed under Maryland law is $6,000.

Brown could not be reached by telephone for comment and online court records do not list an attorney. He was elected last month by the 40th District Central Committee to take the seat in the House.

In a statement, Pugh said she was “saddened by the allegations” but declined further comment, citing the ongoing investigations.