The FBI frantically tried to keep Marion Barry in a hotel room with ex-model Rasheeda Moore to avoid the collapse of its undercover sting operation against the mayor, Barry's lawyer said Friday in federal court.
R. Kenneth Mundy zeroed in on the FBI videotape, which was played Thursday at Barry's cocaine and perjury trial showing the mayor smoking crack cocaine Jan. 18 at the Vista Hotel.On the tape, when Barry announces that he is preparing to leave Moore's hotel room, a female FBI undercover agent telephones Moore.
"You told the agent you were coming downstairs and the agent said, `No, no, don't,' " suggested Mundy.
"That's correct," said Moore.
"The plan was to keep Mr. Barry in the hotel room," said Mundy.
"That is correct," said Moore.
"The plan was not to let him get down to the lobby," said Mundy. Moore agreed.
After the agent's call, the undercover agent known as Wanda Moore delivered crack to the room and Barry smoked it. Wanda Moore was posing as a friend of Rasheeda Moore's.
Mundy suggested Rasheeda Moore's testimony has been bought and paid for by the FBI. Mundy brought out that even the clothes used in the sting operation were purchased by the government.
Mundy also focused on Moore's efforts to coax a reluctant Barry up to her hotel room to begin the sting.
"Who gave you instructions that you had to get Mr. Barry into the hotel room?" Mundy demanded to know.
"I was told by the FBI," said Moore.
But in testimony earlier to a grand jury, she said the opposite, Mundy said.
"The FBI told you not to persuade Mr. Barry to come up to the hotel room," said Mundy, referring to her earlier testimony.
"That's correct, I was told not to be persuasive," admitted Moore. Such instructions would indicate the FBI was being careful to avoid accusations that it was entrapping the mayor.
When Mundy suggested she was either lying now or had lied to the grand jury, she said she was confused by his questions.
Barry's lawyer depicted Moore as a down-on-her-luck ex-model who had lied about her own drug use as recently as January. She had been introduced to freebasing crack cocaine in the summer of 1987, she told the grand jury.
"You didn't want the grand jury to know that you had been freebasing crack cocaine for 14 years," Mundy told her.
"That was not the case, Mr. Mundy," replied Moore. She admitted she had been freebasing for that long but said that for a period leading up to the summer of 1987, she had not done it."
"It was inaccurate," she said of her grand jury testimony, but "I was not choosing to be dishonest."
Barry, 54, is charged with three felony counts of perjury and 11 misdemeanor counts of cocaine possession and conspiracy. If convicted of all charges, he would face a maximum 26 years in prison and $1.85 million in fines.