March 20, 2014
DALLAS (KRLD) - The federal investigation into Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price and his long-time assistant Daphney Fain appears close to an end, according to attorneys representing the two.
Fain lawyer Tom Mills says grand jury subpoenas to associates of his client and to Dallas County workers went out “several days in a row.” He says the large number of subpoenas, and the people who have received them are an indication the United States Attorney’s Office is in the final stages of its probe.
Likewise, attorney Billy Ravkind has received information about the subpoenas and also believes the investigation is nearing an end.
The probe of Price exploded into the public light in June, 2011 when the Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the Commissioner’s Oak Cliff home. The agents were seen hauling a safe out of the house.
Subsequent legal papers have given a rare glimpse into the inner workings of probe. A civil forfeiture suit filed in May, 2012 says agents seized and are demanding to keep $229,590 found in the safe. The papers say Price is under investigation for conspiracy to commit bribery, money laundering and bankruptcy fraud.
Price has angrily denounced the investigation as a sham in the past. Today, he declined comment. Ravkind also declined to be interviewed, saying he has nothing to add.
If the two attorneys feel the investigation may be drawing to a close, so does former East Texas U.S. Attorney Matthew Orwig. “What it indicates to me is that the prosecutors have defined the theory of their case.” said Orwig. “They have a good sense of the charges and they’re now making sure that they have all the evidence to fit all the points. They’re buttoning that up.”
Orwig also has spoken with attorneys representing clients under subpoena. He concludes from “those in a position to know” that the grand jury may soon take action.
The U.S. Attorneys office has said in the past it will not comment on an ongoing investigation.