Former D.C. Government Official Sentenced to 27 Months in Prison for Bribery and Extortion
|U.S. Attorney’s Office June 23, 2009|
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Acting United States Attorney Channing D. Phillips announced today that Ikela M. Dean, a former Contact Representative at the D.C. Department of Consumer & Regulatory Affairs, Basic Business License Division, was sentenced to 27 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release by U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton. The sentence reaffirms that unscrupulous government officials who betray the public trust will be punished. The Department of Justice is committed to aggressively ferreting out this type of corruption and holding those responsible accountable for their actions.
Previously, on November 14, 2008, a federal jury found Dean guilty of one count of Receipt of a Bribe by a Public Official and one count of Extortion Under Color of Official Right.
According to the government's evidence, during the period from July 2007 through September 2007, the defendant, demanded cash payments from customers in return for performing her official duties of issuing elevator renewal licenses and other basic business licenses. As a result of her criminal conduct, several hotels, a hospital, a religious organization and other non-profit organizations were forced to give into her demands for cash payments in return for obtaining elevator certificates and other licenses. With the assistance of one of the victims' representative, the FBI recorded three telephone conversations during which defendant Dean demanded cash payments in return for issuing business licenses. In addition, the FBI also videotaped two meetings between Dean and a victim, in which defendant Dean accepted cash payments for performing her official duties. Unbeknownst to defendant Dean, one of the videotaped meetings was with an FBI undercover agent. The agent paid defendant Dean with $1275 in marked money. In return, defendant Dean provided the undercover agent a business license for a purported Billiard Parlor. The marked money was later recovered from a bathroom stall used by Dean while she was being interrogated by the FBI.
In announcing the sentencing, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillips praised the outstanding efforts of the Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation who handled the matter. He also commended the efforts of Paralegal Specialist Diane Hayes, Legal Assistants Lisa Robinson, Jamasee Lucas, Sierra Tate, and Litigation Support Specialist Joseph Calvarese. Finally, he praised the investigative work of Assistant U.S. Timothy Lynch, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Lionel Andre, who indicted and prosecuted the case.