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News Story

Convicted Financier Tony Rezko Could Hurt Illinois Governor

Gov. Blagojevich/official photo

Gov. Blagojevich/official photo

Tony Rezko could help the feds build their case against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. It’s likely the convicted felon is dishing up dirt on somebody.

BY NATASHA KORECKI
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — Federal prosecutors asked a judge Monday to indefinitely postpone Tony Rezko’s scheduled Oct. 28 sentencing on corruption charges, acknowledging they are engaged in talks with the former top political fund-raiser for Sen. Barack Obama, Gov. Blagojevich and others “that could affect . . . sentencing.”
The Chicago Sun-Times first reported in August that Rezko might be cooperating with prosecutors. Since then, the talks, and the prosecution’s efforts to confirm information Rezko has provided, have been an open secret. In September, sources close to the investigation confirmed the talks to the Sun-Times but said there was no deal with Rezko.
In court filings, prosecutors said they are in discussions with Tony Rezko, who was convicted of corruption charges.
The 53-year-old Wilmette businessman, who at one time was a top adviser to Blagojevich, was convicted in June of wide-ranging corruption tied to state deals. He could face a lengthy prison term and still faces two more criminal trials.
Several criminal-defense lawyers, who spoke to the Sun-Times only on the condition they not be named, said prosecutors have asked to interview or reinterview their clients about allegations that Blagojevich’s campaign took contributions in exchange for state contracts or appointments
For Full Story

JetBlue a Little Blue Over Boozed-Up Passenger and Diverted Flight

Some passengers are better off sticking to Diet Coke and pretzels instead of booze — especially when it means diverting a flight.

By Associated Press
SALT LAKE CITY — The FBI says a JetBlue flight headed from New York to Burbank, Calif., landed in Salt Lake City after an intoxicated passenger caused a disruption.
The FBI’s Salt Lake office says about 130 passengers and crew got off of Flight 359 in Salt Lake late Monday night and were re-screened.
Read More

Gambino Family Mobster in Fla. Sentenced to 9 Years

Even the New York mob likes a little sunshine and a good early bird special. But Gambino mobster Vincent Artuso, 64,  is going off to a place where most people would rather not retire.

By The Associated Press
MIAMI — A captain of the Gambino crime family’s South Florida operations, who prosecutors say has been linked to an infamous hit that led to John Gotti’s rise to power, was sentenced Tuesday to nine years in federal prison in a major real estate fraud case.
U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks imposed the sentence on Vincent Artuso, 64, following his conviction in October on 41 fraud and racketeering charges involving a lengthy scam against ADT Security Services Inc. The scheme involved several crooked real estate deals that cost ADT, which is part of Tyco International Ltd., at least $11 million and possibly much more, prosecutors said.
For Full Story

Illinois Gov Told Jesse Jackson Jr. 6 Years Ago that His Wife Didn’t Get Lottery Job Because He Refused To Donate $25,000 to Campaign

Jesse Jackson Jr/official photo

Jesse Jackson Jr/official photo

It’s no surprise that Gov. Blagojevich may have solicited financial favors long before this latest episode.  But the real news here is that Jesse Jackson also shared information about public corruption with feds in the past several years, according to reports out of Chicago.

By Don Babwin
Associated Press
CHICAGO — Shortly after his 2002 election, Gov. Rod Blagojevich told Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. he didn’t appoint the congressman’s wife as lottery director because he had refused him a $25,000 campaign donation, a person familiar with the conversation told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
“Blagojevich went out of his way to say, ‘You know I was considering your wife for the lottery job and the $25,000 you didn’t give me? That’s why she’s not getting the job,'” the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the ongoing federal investigation.
Jackson’s name has played prominently ever since Blagojevich was arrested last week on corruption charges, including allegations that he tried to sell or trade President-elect Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat for personal gain.
For Full Story

Related Story in Washington Post

Recent Court Documents

 

FBI Blagojevich Tapes and Transcripts

Tape 1Transcript
Tape 2Transcript
Tape 3Transcript
Tape 4Transcript


U.S. Atty in Chicago Asks Obama Not To Release Report on His Staff & Blagojevich Scandal

Just when you thought things couldn’t get more interesting, the U.S. Attorney makes a special request during the holiday season.

BY ABDON M. PALLASCH
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — Barack Obama insisted once again Monday that his office did nothing wrong in its contacts with Gov. Blagojevich’s office over a replacement for Obama’s seat in the U.S. Senate – but the president-elect said the feds have asked him to delay release of an internal report that clears his staff.
“We were prepared to release the findings of the review that had been done, which was quite thorough and comprehensive,” Obama told a news conference in Chicago. “The U.S. Attorney’s office asked us to hold off releasing those for a week, and so I would ask for a your patience because I do not want to interfere with an ongoing investigation.”
U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald said he asked for the delay while his office conducts more interviews.
For Full Story

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Chicago FBI Agent Shoots Bank Robbery Suspect Who Tries to Run Him Over

As if there wasn’t enough wild and crazy stuff happening in this town. Here’s the latest — a distraction to the Gov. Blagojevich scandal.

FROM STNG WIRE REPORTS
CHICAGO — A man suspected of robbing a bank in the Uptown neighborhood Monday morning was shot and seriously wounded by an FBI agent downtown near Loyola University’s campus just off of Michigan Avenue when he tried to run over another FBI agent.
Paramedics responded to 111 E. Pearson St. about 10:40 a.m. for a reported shooting, according to Fire Media Affairs Asst. Director Eve Rodriguez.
The suspect had robbed a TCF Bank branch earlier Monday morning in the 4300 block of North Sheridan Road and was tracked to the 800 block of North Michigan Avenue, according to the FBI.
After a short foot chase, the suspect was apprehended, according to a release from the FBI. While he was being taken into custody, the man somehow managed to get behind the wheel of an FBI vehicle, then tried to run over one of the arresting FBI agents with that car, the release said. A second FBI agent, fearing for his partner’s safety, fired one round from his service weapon into the car, striking the suspect.
One person was taken from the scene in serious condition to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Rodriguez said.
No bystanders or FBI agents were injured in the incident, the release said.
For Full Story

A Moment in History: LBJ and J.Edgar Hoover Chat About Lee Harvey Oswald, Jack Ruby and Polygraphs

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwAgrnWAfAs