Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

State Rep. J.P. Miranda facing political corruption charges

State Rep. J.P. Miranda and his sister are facing three felony charges in a political corruption case, Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams announced today.

State Rep. J.P. Miranda facing political corruption charges

State Rep. J.P. Miranda, during swearing-in ceremony. (Photo from pahouse.com/miranda)
State Rep. J.P. Miranda, during swearing-in ceremony. (Photo from pahouse.com/miranda)

State Rep. J.P. Miranda and his sister, Michelle Wilson, have been charged with three political corruption charges, Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams announced today.

The charges are conflict of interest, perjury and criminal conspiracy. They are expected to turn themselves in within a few days, according to a press release from Williams.

Fox 29 reported in May that the District Attorney's Office was investigating its report on allegations of a "ghost employee" on the books in Miranda's North Philly district office. Miranda, in his car leaving his office, peeled out into traffic when Fox 29 reporter Jeff Cole tried to ask him questions.

The D.A. opened a grand jury investigation after the Fox story aired, according to the release. The probe found that Miranda created the no-show position for Timothy Duckett, a former campaign worker and part-time driver, to funnel money to his sister, Michelle Wilson. 

Miranda had previously attempted to make Wilson chief of staff for his legislative office, but was rebuffed by the House Democratic Caucus, which said the hiring would violate anti-nepotism rules. Miranda then hired Duckett and told him he didn't have to show up if he funneled money to Wilson, according to the grand jury.

Miranda, a Democrat, is up for reelection this year after winning his first term in the 197th District in 2012 with 95 percent of the general election vote.  He replaced former state Rep. Jewell Williams, who stepped down to run for sheriff in Philadelphia.

Miranda previously worked for City Council President Darrell Clarke, state Sen. Shirley Kitchen and Mayor Nutter.

Tomas Sanchez, the husband of City Councilwoman Maria Quinones Sanchez, moved to an apartment one block north of their home last fall to be within the boundaries of the 197th District.  Sanchez said he was seriously considering a run for state House seat.

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
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Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
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Sean Collins Walsh is from Bucks County and went to Northwestern University. He joined the Daily News copy desk in 2012 and now covers the Nutter administration. Before that, he interned at papers including The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News and The Seattle Times. E-mail tips to walshSE@phillynews.com
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