NATION IN BRIEF : WASHINGTON, D.C. : Barry Initiated Drug Deal, U.S. Charges

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Federal prosecutors called Mayor Marion Barry a long-term drug abuser and said he initiated the crack cocaine transaction that led to his arrest at a hotel in a Jan. 18 FBI sting. U.S. Atty. Jay Stephens, in a memorandum filed in U.S. District Court, said a sting operation was set up only after a grand jury heard repeated testimony that Barry used illegal drugs for years. Barry's attorneys have claimed the government had "manufactured the crime." They also have said Barry is an alcoholic who also was addicted to prescription drugs. The memorandum also disclosed that on the night of his arrest Barry's blood alcohol level was measured at .005--20 times below the legal limit for drunken driving.

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