THE president of the United States-based National Black Leadership Roundtable, Walter Fauntroy, who last week pledged to mobilise support for the lifting of sanctions against Zimbabwe, is a conv
icted felon, the Zimbabwe Independent has learnt.
Fauntroy was in the country last week and met President Mugabe at State House amidst great publicity in the state media.
But it emerged this week he was convicted when a US Congressman of violating the False Statements Statute based on a false statement he made regarding a charitable contribution.
According to documents dated March 22, 1995, Fauntroy was charged with one federal felony in the US District Court for the District of Columbia and agreed to plead guilty to the charges.
Fauntroy (64), who served in Congress from 1971 to 1991, was charged with “violating the False Statements Statute … based on a false statement regarding a charitable contribution and omission of a material liability on his US House of Representatives Financial Disclosure Statement for the calendar year, 1988,” the documents say.
It was alleged that the former Congressman filed a false financial disclosure statement required by the Ethics in Government Act with the clerk of the US House of Representatives in May 1989.
Under the provisions of that Act and under the rules of the House of Representatives, each member of the House is required to file a financial disclosure statement annually.
Fauntroy was charged with having falsely claimed on the financial disclosure statement for 1988 that he had made an end-of-year charitable donation in the amount of US$23 887 to the New Bethel Baptist Church where he served as pastor, to make it appear as if he had complied with the rules of the House imposing a cap on outside earned income.
Under the rules of the House for 1988, no member was permitted to earn more than 30% of the member’s salary.
Fauntroy was also charged with failure to disclose on the financial disclosure statement a loan of $24 200 he had obtained in June 1988. The provisions of the Ethics in Government Act required that Fauntroy disclose the loan.
Fauntroy pleaded guilty in 1995 to the felony and was sentenced to probation.