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Posted at 01:21 PM ET, 01/12/2012

Marshall Banks is charged as part of Harry Thomas investigation

The founder and president of a non-profit group that played a key role in allowing former D.C. Council member Harry Thomas to embezzle just over $300,000 in District funds was charged Thursday with a felony that accuses him of concealing and failing to report the theft.

Marshall D. Banks of the Langston 21st Century Foundation was charged with misprision of a felony in a “criminal information,” a type of charging document that can only be filed with the defendant’s consent and signals a plea deal is near. He has a court hearing set for Friday before U.S. District Judge John D. Bates.

According to prosecutors, Thomas ensured that $392,000 in city funds were steered to Banks’ foundation in 2008 and 2009. The foundation then transferred $306,000 to entities that Thomas controlled. Thomas then pocketed the money and spent it on cars, trips, clothes and meals.

Thomas resigned from office last week, a day before pleading guilty to two felony charges related to his embezzlement of $353,000 in District funds. The former council member faces between 37 and 46 months at his sentencing in May.

Thomas was in D.C. Superior Court Thursday undergoing routine drug testing as part of the conditions of his agreement with prosecutors to release him before his sentencing.

Dressed in a grey suit and accompanied by an attorney, Thomas proceeded to the lower level of the courthouse and stood in line with about a dozen other individuals — mostly men dressed in jeans, t-shirts and sweatshirts — who were waiting to take their urine tests in room C-220, the Pretrial Services Agency.

Thomas declined to discuss his case. Once he reached the counter, Thomas was escorted to the back of the office. About 10 minutes later, he emerged and left the courthouse.

This item has been updated.

Read the charging documents (full-size view available):

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By and  |  01:21 PM ET, 01/12/2012

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