Greg Bishop (The Center Square).
Former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan was indicted Tuesday by the prosecution on 22 charges of corruption.
U.S. Assistant John R. Lausch Jr. announced Madigan’s charges on Tuesday afternoon. They connect Madigan with the almost ten-year-old bribery scheme that utility Commonwealth Edison was acquitted of in the summer 2020.
The indictment alleges the “Madigan Enterprise” engaged in interstate commerce and constituted an “ongoing organization whose members functioned as a continuing unit for the common purpose of achieving the objectives of the enterprise.”
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The indictment also alleges the goals of the enterprise, led by Madigan while using his official office as Representative and Speaker, were to enhance, preserve and exercise Madigan’s political power and financial well-being.
Madigan (79) could be sentenced and spend the rest his life behind bars. Lausch stated that the most severe charges, conspiracy, and racketeering can lead to up to 20 years imprisonment.
Madigan, a former state representative from Legislative District 22 of Chicago, was in office until January 2021. This was a significant period in which he served as the Speaker of the House. Gov. J.B. Pritzker was with Madigan during two years of his term.
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“I have heard accusations over time,” Pritzker said. “I have kept my distance, and very importantly I really have believe and you’ve heard me say it over and over again, i’ve pushed legislation, that we have got to root out people in public office if they have committed acts of corruption.”
House Republican Leader Jim Durkin weighed in on news of his former Democratic counterpart’s indictment.
“Illinois deserves better. This is another chapter in the sad story of corruption that has pervaded every corner of the state that was touched by Mike Madigan and his Democrat enablers and has dismantled true democracy in Illinois,” he said in a statement. “Today, the same Democrats who empowered Madigan are still blocking real ethics reform just like they blocked the Special Investigating Committee that was created to get to the bottom of Madigan’s corrupt activities.”
Madigan was the longest-serving American legislator, having held the seat in the statehouse for fifty years (as of January 20, 2021) and being the speaker for most of those 50 years.
Chicago Democrat, after being accused but not charged in a Federal corruption probe, spent $2.7 Million on legal work for 2021. This was most after he was removed from office.
After it became clear he didn’t have the votes, Madigan withdrew his bid in January 2021 to continue as speaker of the Illinois House, a position he held for nearly four decades. On February 18, 2021, Madigan resigned as speaker of the Illinois House.
Next day, Friends of Michael J Madigan’s campaign fund spent $2million with Katten Muchin Roseman LLP in Chicago. The law firm employs more than 700 people around the globe. According to Illinois Sunshine’s campaign finance records for last year, Friends of Michael J. Madigan spent 2,771,890.55 on six law firms.
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Federal prosecutors reached an agreement with Exelon’s subsidiary ComEd in 2020 to defer prosecution. In the deferred prosecution agreement, the utility acknowledged that it had paid $1.3million in contracts and jobs to Madigan associates during nine years of influence over the former House speaker. ComEd was also fined $200 million. Fidel Martquez, another former ComEd representative, has pleaded guilty on September 2020 to bribery allegations.
Prosecutors also indicted Tim Mapes, who served for years under Madigan as the clerk of the Illinois House and as Madigan’s chief of staff, on a charge of lying to a grand jury in May 2021. The indictment alleges Mapes lied to the grand jury when asked about Madigan’s relationship with McClain.
This article was Syndicated by permission of The Center Square.