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A former D.C. government attorney pleaded guilty to federal charges Oct. 10 in connection with a scheme to defraud his clients in private practice. Billy King, 55, a solo practitioner who spent a decade as the general counsel for the city’s Office of Campaign Finance, admitted in filings in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to taking approximately $25,000 from two clients by signing off on their insurance payouts and pocketing the money instead. During his short-lived private practice, run out of an office on Georgia Avenue Northwest managed by his wife, Gwendolyn, King made a living as a personal injury lawyer, often working on contingency. In one instance, he admitted to taking $17,100 in insurance payouts for a family of three. In another case, he took $9,000 intended to cover medical payments for a client. From 1993 to last month, King served as a labor adviser to the city’s Department of Human Services. He was disbarred for five years in December 2004. King is scheduled to appear for sentencing before Judge Rosemary Collyer on Jan. 19, 2007. He faces a maximum of 10 years and a $250,000 fine. His attorney, Michelle Peterson from the Office of the Federal Public Defender, did not return a call for comment.
Emma Schwartz can be contacted at [email protected].

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