Category Archives: Kickbacks

Kiferbaum pleads guilty, April 10, 2013, Rezko Levine Blagojevich Obama ties, Children’s Memorial Hospital shakedown, Pamela Meyer Davis wiretap, IL Health board rigging

Kiferbaum pleads guilty, April 10, 2013, Rezko Levine Blagojevich Obama ties, Children’s Memorial Hospital shakedown, Pamela Meyer Davis wiretap, IL Health board rigging

“Why wasn’t Rod Blagojevich, Governor of IL, prosecuted before Tony Rezko, a businessman?”…Citizen Wells

“Why did Patrick Fitzgerald and the US Justice Department wait until December 2008 to arrest Rod Blagojevich?”…Citizen Wells

“Regardless of how this plays out, it benefits Obama. If there is no appeal or the appeal is denied, Blagojevich will be sequestered. If the appeal proceeds, it could drag out beyond impacting the 2012 election cycle. The intent is obvious.”…Citizen Wells, July 19, 2011

From My Fox Chicago April 10, 2013.

“Another piece of unfinished business in the decade-long investigation of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s administration has been dealt with in federal court in Chicago.

Building contractor Jacob Kiferbaum pleaded guilty Wednesday to attempted extortion in an amended plea deal. It calls for a prison term of about two years when he is sentenced July 17.

Kiferbaum admitted he and others with links to Blagojevich threatened to deny state permission for a suburban hospital’s expansion unless the hospital hired Kiferbaum for the job.

A 2003 investigation into the scheme spawned other investigations that eventually toppled dozens of Illinois powerbrokers, including Blagojevich himself.”
Read more:

http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/21933398/jacob-kiferbaum-exec-pleads-guilty-in-rod-blagojevich-related-case#ixzz2Q5aAtbsQ

Some background from Citizen Wells September 2, 2012.

“Was Barack Obama the original plan for the presidency by the DNC and Chicago Machine? Rod Blagojevich envisioned himself in that office. But in a high
profile position as Governor of Illinois, with brashness by nature and a less stealthy approach to pay to play politics than Obama, the feds began investigating him in 2003 and reports soon hit the Chicago media of corruption in his administration.

The bulk of the charges in the Criminal complaint, indictment and evidentiary proffer and indeed, what the Tony Rezko trial centered around, took place from 2003 to 2005. They include much activity involving the TRS, Teacher Retirement System, Hospital construction approval, a plan to shakedown Children’s Memorial Hospital, appointments to state government such as Ali Ata to the Illinois Finance Authority and real estate transactions involving Blagojevich’s wife Patti.”

“Hospitals:

“The brief conversation was between Levine and Rezko on April 24, 2004, just three days after Levine said he and Rezko had rigged a vote of a state hospital
planning board to approve a controversial hospital in Crystal Lake. Hospital contractor Jacob Kiferbaum was going to pay Levine and Rezko $1 million in
bribes if the Crystal Lake facility won approval, Levine has testified.

Levine testified that he called Rezko on April 24 to set up a meeting to discuss their next shakedown target: Children’s Memorial Hospital. Just minutes
before Levine called Rezko, Levine had hung up with a money manager from the investment banking firm Bear Stearns named Nicholas Hurtgen, who prosecutors say was a confederate in past Levine kickback schemes.” Rezko trial, March 21, 2008 

So, why would the prosecution of Blagojevich be delayed despite the fact that he profoundly affected the citizens and state of IL?”

“The following facts make the argument that Rod Blagojevich should have been arrested long before December 8, 2008 and before Tony Rezko.

  • Blagojevich began scheming as soon as he entered office. From the Blagojevich arrest press release. “The charges include historical allegations that Blagojevich and Harris schemed with others – including previously convicted defendants Antoin Rezko, Stuart Levine, Ali Ata and others – since becoming governor in 2002 to obtain and attempt to obtain financial benefits for himself, his family and third parties, including his campaign committee, Friends of Blagojevich, in exchange for appointments to state boards and commissions, state employment, state contracts and access to state funds.”
  • Pamela Meyer Davis began wearing a secret FBI wiretap  in late 2003 to record conversations involving state health planning board.
  • Most of the corruption in the Tony Rezko, Stuart Levine and Rod Blagojevich indictments took place between 2003 and 2005. Counts 1, 2 and 4 in the Blagojevich Indictment were eventualy dropped. Those counts covered that time period and represented approximately half of the indictment.
  • “FBI Special Agent Daniel Cain, the primary case agent on the investigation into Levine and Rezko, is on the stand now in testimony that is laying the foundation for entering the wiretaps into evidence. Cain said the investigation, dubbed Operation Board Games by the federal agents, began in December 2003 and was prompted by information gleaned from an informant whom he did not identify. That witness, he said, took part in meetings with two other individuals who were in contact with Levine by phone at his home. Cain said Levine had three phone lines in his North Shore home. Federal agents recorded conversations on those lines April 8-May 21, 2004. Those dates span the time when Levine, Rezko and others allegedly were working to rig the hospital board vote on a Mercy Health System hospital proposal for Crystal Lake and other kickback schemes prosecutors claim they were engaged in.” Rezko trial March 12, 2008″

Read more:

https://citizenwells.wordpress.com/2012/09/02/blagojevich-prosecution-delays-protect-obama-part-1-blagojevich-arrest-delayed-after-2008-election-patrick-fitzgerald-usdoj-had-key-witness-and-crimes/

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Mercy Health System haunts Obama and Blagojevich, Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board, Board rigged, Obama guilty

Mercy Health System haunts Obama and Blagojevich, Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board, Board rigged, Obama guilty

“Why has Obama, for over 2 years, employed numerous private and government attorneys to avoid presenting a legitimate birth certificate and college records?”…Citizen Wells and millions of concerned Americans

Obamaaaaa………Obamaaaaa.

We are still in the midst of the Twelve Days of Christmas and the ghost of Christmas past is haunting Obama. Mercy Health System and the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board.

From the Chicago Tribune, Trib Local Crystal Lake January 3, 2011.

“Mercy Health System wants to build a 128-bed hospital in Crystal Lake, less than 10 miles from where a similar-sized facility has been proposed in Huntley, raising the question of how many beds are needed in McHenry County.

The Mercy application, filed last week, resurrects a less ambitious plan of more than five years ago that became ensnared in an investigation of the state hospital board. The certificate of need for that hospital, proposed for the same location as the latest one — Route 31 and Three Oaks Road — was approved by the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board but overturned by a judge.”

“Mercy’s original proposal for 70 beds was shot down by the state board in 2003. Mercy tried again in April 2004 and was awarded a certificate of need as board members became the target of a federal corruption investigation.

A few months later, former Gov. Rod Blagojevich and state lawmakers revamped the board. The Tribune reported in June 2005 that then-board Vice Chairman Stuart Levine planned to split a $1.5 million kickback with former Blagojevich fundraiser Antoin “Tony” Rezko from contractor Jacob Kiferbaum, who was to build the hospital.”

Read more:

http://triblocal.com/crystal-lake/2011/01/03/mercy-joins-sprint-for-hospital/

This is important and links Obama, who was chairman of the IL Senate committee that changed the number of board members from 15 to 9, to the board rigging.

“Rod Blagojevich and state lawmakers revamped the board.”

The rest of the story from Citizen Wells April 23, 2010.

“From the Blagojevich trial proffer recently released by judge James Zagel.

“Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board Kickback
The Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board (the “Planning Board”) is a commission of the State of Illinois, established by statute, whose members are appointed by the Governor of the State of Illinois. During the relevant time period, the Planning Board consisted of nine individuals. State
law required an entity seeking to build a hospital, medical office building, or other medical facility in Illinois to obtain a permit, known as a “Certificate of Need” (“CON”), from the Planning Board prior to beginning construction.

Rezko was able to obtain significant influence over the affairs of the Planning Board by arranging for Blagojevich to appoint five of Rezko’s associates and/or friends, including Levine, as members of the Planning Board in 2003. Rezko and Levine subsequently agreed to use their influence over the Planning Board to obtain a kickback of at least $1 million from a contractor, Jacob Kiferbaum, who wanted the Planning Board to award Mercy Hospital a CON to build a new
hospital. Rezko and Levine were able to arrange for Mercy Hospital to receive its CON at the April 2004 Planning Board meeting, but their scheme was interrupted by the FBI before any kickback was paid

Control over the Planning Board

Levine was on the Planning Board when Blagojevich became governor, but his term was due to expire in 2003. Levine sent a message to the Blagojevich administration through Cellini that he wanted to be re-appointed. Levine later heard from both Kelly and Cellini that he would be reappointed, and Levine was re-appointed to the Planning Board in the Fall of 2003.

After Levine was reappointed, he shared a private plane ride from New York to Chicago with Blagojevich and Kelly. Levine, Blagojevich, and Kelly were the only passengers on the flight. At the beginning of the flight, Levine thanked Blagojevich for reappointing him to the Planning Board.
Blagojevich responded (in Kelly’s presence) that Levine should only talk with “Tony” [Rezko] or “Chris” [Kelly] about the board, “but you stick with us and you will do very well for yourself.”
Levine understood from Blagojevich’s manner of speaking and words that Blagojevich did not want Levine to talk to Blagojevich directly about anything to do with the boards, but that Levine should talk to Rezko or Kelly. Levine also understood that Blagojevich meant that Levine could make a lot of money working with Blagojevich’s administration. Blagojevich did not seem to expect a
response from Levine, and Kelly then shifted the conversation to something else.

Around the time that Levine was reappointed, Rezko told Levine that he expected to control the Planning Board. Rezko said that he had discussed the makeup of the Planning Board with Thomas Beck, who was the Chairman of the Planning Board. Before one of the Planning Board meetings, Beck talked to Levine about how there were five members of the Planning Board who
were Rezko’s people, including Levine and Beck. The other three individuals who would vote as Rezko wished were Fortune Massuda, Imad Almanaseer, and Michel Malek. Documents and testimony from individuals in Illinois state government who helped select candidates for boards and commissions positions, including the Planning Board, confirm that Rezko was the individual
responsible for selecting those five individuals to be appointed to the Planning Board. Since it took five votes to approve any CON, Rezko’s people effectively controlled what the Planning Board did.
Beck typically indicated to Levine and the other three members of Rezko’s voting bloc the items on the Planning Board agenda that Rezko cared about and how Rezko wanted them to vote.”

Read more:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/media/acrobat/2010-04/53290204.pdf

How is Obama tied to this scheme?

From the Rezko trial.

March 6, 2008

Duffy mentions Levine’s close political ties to the late Mayor Harold Washington, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill), former Gov. Jim Edgar and U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Chicago) as examples of how connected Levine was.”

March 10, 2008

“Ziegelmueller asked Hayden about a 2003 e-mail exchange with Lichtenstein, then the governor’s top lawyer, in which Wilhelm made recommendations for the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board.
The name of Barack Obama, the Democratic front-runner for the presidential nomination, also appears in the e-mail as a member of a strategic team reviewing hospital board matters with the governor’s staff when he was a state senator. The hospital board was scheduled to be revamped in the summer of 2003.

Obama was then chairman of the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services. Other legislative leaders, including Madigan, were part of that review panel as well, according to the e-mail.”

March 12, 2008

“Fast forward to July 15, 2003, when Gov. Rod Blagojevich was revamping the hospital board on which Beck held a seat for several years. Beck said he wanted to stay on the panel so he called on Rezko at his North Side office. He came armed with a $1,000 check for Blagojevich’s campaign fund. Beck said he asked Rezko to put in a good word for him and Rezko said he would see what he could do.

A few weeks later, Beck said Rezko called him with the good news that he would be reappointed to the board along with Stuart Levine and another holdover member. Rezko also said three doctor friends of his were going to be put on the revamped panel by Blagojevich, Beck testified.”
“Key to the government case are dozens of recorded wiretap conversations on three phone lines into the home of Stuart Levine, the former member of two state boards whom prosecutors say worked with Antoin “Tony” Rezko to rig decisions of those panels.

FBI Special Agent Daniel Cain, the primary case agent on the investigation into Levine and Rezko, is on the stand now in testimony that is laying the foundation for entering the wiretaps into evidence.

Cain said the investigation, dubbed Operation Board Games by the federal agents, began in December 2003 and was prompted by information gleaned from an informant whom he did not identify. That witness, he said, took part in meetings with two other individuals who were in contact with Levine by phone at his home.

Cain said Levine had three phone lines in his North Shore home. Federal agents recorded conversations on those lines April 8-May 21, 2004. Those dates span the time when Levine, Rezko and others allegedly were working to rig the hospital board vote on a Mercy Health System hospital proposal for Crystal Lake and other kickback schemes prosecutors claim they were engaged in.”

Just as Rod Blagojevich’s involvement in Chicago, IL corruption was revealed during the Tony Rezko trial, Obama’s involvement should be revealed in the Blagojevich trial.

Reported here (and much earlier), April 1, 2010.

“In the media, Obama always made it sound like he rarely saw Rezko, saying they met for breakfast or lunch once or twice a year. However, the FBI mole John Thomas helped investigators “build a record of repeat visits to the old offices of Rezko and former business partner Daniel Mahru’s Rezmar Corp., at 853 N. Elston, by Blagojevich and Obama during 2004 and 2005,“ according to the February 10, 2008 Sun-Times.

During his March 14, 2008 interview, the Times told Obama, Thomas is an FBI mole and he “recently told us that he saw you coming and going from Rezko’s office a lot.”

“And three other sources told us that you and Rezko spoke on the phone daily.””

“The rigging of the IL Health Planning Facilities Board is a major charge in the indictments of Rod Blagojevich, Tony Rezko, Stuart Levine, Robert Weinstein and others tied to Barack Obama.”

“In or about the spring of 2004, REZKO and LEVINE agreed that LEVINE, whose term on the TRS Board was due to expire in May 2004, needed to be reappointed to the TRS Board and that additional TRS Board members needed to be appointed who would cooperate with REZKO and LEVINE.”

“Obama was chairman of the Senate Health & Human Services Committee in January 2003.”
“A review of senate records from January 2003 to August 2003, shows Obama played a major role as chairman of that committee, in pushing through Senate Bill 1332, that led to the “Illinois Health Facilities Planning Act,” which reduced the number of members on the Board from 15 to 9, making the votes much easier to rig.”
“The bill was filed with the senate secretary on February 20, 2003, and assigned to Human Services Committee for review on February 27. Less than a month later, as chairman, Obama sent word that the bill should be passed on March 13, 2003.”
“On May 31, 2003, the House and Senate passed the bill and the only senator listed in the “yes” votes mentioned in the Board Games indictments is Obama.
Blagojevich made the effective date June 27, 2003, and the co-schemers already had the people lined up to stack the Board and rig the votes with full approval from Obama.”

“So far, Blagojevich, reelected in 2006, is more deeply enmeshed in the scandal than Obama, who’s not been implicated in any wrongdoing.

But all three operated in the murky world of Illinois Democratic politics, where money, family relationships and long business associations provide the invisible glue of the local political world.”
“Using Federal Election Commission and Illinois state records, The Times’ Dan Morain compared donors on the FBI spreadsheet to Obama’s contributors. Guess what.

Sen. Obama received $222,000 during the same 2001-2004 period from Rezko-related Blagojevich donors.”

“At the relevant time period, the Planning Board consisted of nine individuals.”

Read more

Reported here  November 2, 2009.

“Ata made a $5,000 donation to Obama less than a month earlier on June 30, 2003. Ata is also an investor in Riverside Park. Almost without fail, the people identified in the Board Games cases as investors in Riverside Park contributed to Obama’s US senate campaign.”

Read more

Reported here  December 11, 2008.

“In addition, the contributions extorted through the Planning Board scheme were for the intended presidential candidate, Blagojevich. Obama’s US senate war chest was already funded and by the time these kickbacks were paid that campaign would be over.

But Obama did end up with $20,000 from the very first kickback paid in the pension fund scheme set up through the Board of the Teacher’s Retirement System.

Elie Maloof and Joseph Aramanda, the straw donors used to funnel the contributions to Obama, also made $1,000 contributions of their own for his failed run for Congress in 2000, on the same day March 17, 2000.

In addition, Aramanda gave $500 to Obama’s senate campaign on June 30, 2003. In the summer of 2005, Aramanda’s teenage son landed a coveted intern position in Obama’s senate office in Washington.

Obama also received contributions directly from the persons appointed to the pension board for the express purpose of rigging the votes. On June 30, 2003, appointee, Jack Carriglio contributed $1,000.

The other appointee, Anthony Abboud, donated $500 to Obama on June 30, 2003, $250 on March 5, 2004, and $1,000 on June 25, 2004.

Michael Winter, who prosecutors say agreed to serve as a funnel for kickbacks paid through an investment firm in one scheme donated $3,000 to Obama on June 30, 2003.”

Read more

Will the mainstream media, including Fox News, cover the real corruption in Chicago and Illinois that Blagojevich and Obama were enmeshed in? Spread the word via your friends and email contacts. Demand that Fox and anyone who will listen report the facts.”

https://citizenwells.wordpress.com/2010/04/23/blagojevich-trial-redacted-motion-segments-obama-and-rezko-obama-subpoena-blagojevic-rezko-levine-obama-corruption-ties/

Blagojevich trial day 2, June 4, 2010, Jury selection, Judge James Zagel, Prosecutors and defense attorneys question jurors, Open thread

Blagojevich trial day 2, June 4, 2010, Jury selection, Judge James Zagel

From CBS 2 in Chicago June 4, 2010.

“Day Two Of Blagojevich Jury Selection Set To Begin”

“Before U.S. District Judge James B. Zagel begins questioning the next pool of potential jurors, prosecutors and defense attorneys will argue whether any of the 29 jury candidates who were interviewed Thursday should be dismissed because of bias.

Once that process is finished, Zagel will bring in another group of potential jurors for questioning.

Ultimately, the judge and attorneys expect to whittle down an original list of 100 potential jurors to about 45 likely jurors.

Then each side will be allowed to exercise peremptory challenges, which allow them to dismiss jurors without giving a reason. Defense attorneys get 13 such challenges; prosecutors get nine. The attorneys get unlimited challenges “for cause,” meaning there is a reason to believe a potential juror is biased.

The end result will be a panel of 12 jurors and likely six alternates to hear what is expected to be a three- to four-month trial. Jurors are paid $40 a day plus transportation costs for the entire trial.”

“Defense attorneys said both Rod and Rob Blagojevich will testify. They also said Patti Blagojevich will take the stand.

The defense has also subpoenaed White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.”

Read more:

http://cbs2chicago.com/governor/rod.blagojevich.trial.2.1731843.html

For complete Blagojevich trial coverage:

https://citizenwells.com/

Blagojevich trial day 1, June 3, 2010, Jury selection, Rod Blagojevich trial begins, Open thread

Blagojevich trial day 1, June 3, 2010, Jury selection

The Rod Blagojevich trial begins today, Thursday, June 3, 2010.

For complete coverage of the Blagojevich trial, background and events leading up to the trial and Blagojevich ties to corruption in Chicago and IL, including Tony Rezko, Stuart Levine, Barack Obama and others visit:

https://citizenwells.com/2010/05/21/blagojevich-trial-complete-coverage-from-citizen-wells/

For your friends and associates getting their information about the Blagojevich trial from the mainstream media visit:

https://citizenwells.com/2010/06/02/blagojevich-trial-transcripts-rezko-trial-testimony-il-health-planning-facilities-board-obama-chairman-of-il-senate-committee-blagojevich-rezko-levine-obama/

I have been informing those around me. The Orwellian brainwashing that has been going on still amazes me.

Blagojevich trial, Obama Levine ties, Stuart Levine must testify, Rezko trial, Politician A, Politician B, Springfield IL, Illinois capital, Purple hotel, Drug parties, Obama records

Blagojevich trial, Obama Levine ties, Stuart Levine must testify

Barack Obama and Stuart Levine

 

 

 From the Citizen Wells blog, April 2, 2008.

I repeat, April 2, 2008.

“We need to know the truth about Barack Obama. We need to know where Obama was on November 4, 1999. We need to know where Obama was and what he was doing during his term in the Illinois Senate. When I first read the allegations of Larry Sinclair, I was very skeptical. I am still somewhat skeptical. However, I went to the records of the Illinois Senate for November 4, 1999 and Barack Obama was not present. Sinclair alleges that he had 2 encounters with Obama from November 3 to November 8 1999. The first encounter was allegedly in a rented limo and involved drugs and gay sex. This alone was not a red flag for me but when you couple this information with Obama’s known association with criminals, with racists and hate mongers and his failure to provide his records while in the Illinois Senate, there is a legitimate need to get straight answers from Obama.”

“Lynn Sweet, a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times states:
“Instead, since I have some reporting history here, I am noting a pattern that has emerged: This is Obama’s third ethical conversion of convenience — taking on a higher standard, but only when it appears to be politically expedient. Obama is making government transparency and ethics a centerpiece of his presidential campaign.”
 
In a Tribune interview Thursday, the Illinois Democrat said he had no intention of sharing any of the documents he might still have in his possession.”
Next are the questions asked and responses from Obama. I know that many people have read this, but it is worth repeating:
“Q: It is kind of unknown where some of the records from your time in Springfield are located. Where is that stuff, what do you have?
“We had one district director. I had one staff person, so, you know, we didn’t have some elaborate sort of system. I didn’t at my disposal millions of dollars and potentially multiple staff people to conduct an archive. Now keep in mind, it is apples and oranges. First of all, I’m not the one who has made this an issue. We saw during the debate, Senator Clinton was asked about it and the suggestion was somehow they’ve done all they could. And my simple point was, I don’t think there is some smoking gun in these archives or something, or some damning evidence.”
 

“Q: What about your stuff, though? What do you have?
“I have no idea. I mean [muffled on recording]. I really don’t. Again, I did not have at my disposal. I wasn’t preparing for the Obama state senatorial library.”
Q: You must have kept some stuff. Correspondence, calendars?
“The problem is whatever remaining documents I have are inevitably incomplete. And then the questions going to be, where’s this or where’s that. Once I start heading down that road, then it puts me in a position that could end up being misleading. I don’t want to mislead people. I don’t know the extent of the records that I have as a state senator.”””

 

“The following is from Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times on November 11, 2007:
“On Friday, Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times reported that she had asked Obama at a news conference: “Do your state senate papers still exist? If they do, just where are they? And would you ever intend to make them public to be responsive to some requests?”
Sweet wrote that he replied: “Nobody has requested specific documents.”
But the Chicago Tribune has reported that it “requested documents from his time in Springfield and never received a response.””

Read more

 Is this one of the reasons Obama has kept hidden his IL Senate records?

From the Tony Rezko Trial

Remember, the IL State Capital is Springfield.

 “Tales of the ‘Purple Hotel’
March 31, 2008; 2:43 p.m.
Prosecutors have taken a turn from the track of the day’s testimony and are asking political fixer and prosecution star witness Stuart Levine again about his drug use, the first time they have done so since early in his testimony.
Levine has said he used a number of drugs in the 1980s and into 2004, including cocaine and crystal methamphetamine.
He said he would make cash withdrawals, give that money to five male friends and use drugs with them during hotel parties. Those parties took place in Springfield and Lincolnwood at a place Levine said he and his friends came to call “the Purple Hotel.””

“”I do not remember using drugs on that day”
April 3, 2008; 12:32 p.m.
One of defense attorney Joseph Duffy’s first stabs at tripping up star prosecution witness Stuart Levine involved an attempt to raise doubt about his state of mind the very first time he met Antoin “Tony” Rezko.
Levine had testified earlier that the two were introduced at a dinner party on Nov. 2, 2002, just days before the election that brought Gov. Rod Blagojevich to power. It was at that dinner that Levine testified he learned that Rezko had been blocking a real estate deal on which Levine had been seeking a sizeable kickback.
But Duffy produced a Levine credit card receipt showing a $761.87 transaction dated that day at a Lincolnwood hotel where Levine often went for all-day drug binges.”

“Levine explains decision to flip
April 3, 2008; 5:56 p.m.
Before Stuart Levine’s testimony ended for the day, he was walked through his decision to cooperate with prosecutors in their corruption case against Antoin “Tony” Rezko.
Rezko’s defense attorney Joseph Duffy wanted to explore Levine’s motivation and first asked about a conversation Levine had with his business partner Robert Weinstein after FBI agents had come to Levine’s home to confront him in May 2004.
Levine’s phone was still tapped, and he was recorded telling Weinstein that agents had visited him. But Levine said he did not remember telling his partner that agents had mentioned Rezko was a target of an investigation.
“The government’s looking for a big fish, and it’s Tony Rezko,” Duffy quoted Levine as saying on the tape, which was not played in court.
Duffy then took Levine through the time leading up to his eventual indictment in the Rosalind Franklin University School of Medicine and Science kickback case a year later, in May 2005.
Levine still had not agreed to cooperate, and Levine told Duffy that he did not believe the government was aware of the “secret part of his life,” meaning his drug abuse and hotel parties with male friends.” 

” Trail of receipts from the Purple Hotel
April 4, 2008; 10:55 a.m.
More tales of the Purple Hotel kicked off this morning’s session of the Antoin “Tony” Rezko corruption trial.
On Thursday, Rezko’s lawyer Joseph Duffy grilled prosecution star witness Stuart Levine about a $761 transaction on his credit card statement for Saturday, Nov. 2, 2002, at the garish purple-painted Lincolnwood hotel that at the time was part of the Radisson chain. Levine has testified that he and a regular group of “drug buddies” often went to the hotel for daylong binges of crystal meth, cocaine, animal tranquilizers and other drugs.
The significance of that date is that it was the same that Rezko and Levine first met. The occasion was a dinner party, and during the chitchat Levine has said the two men came to realize they had been on opposite sides of a shady real estate deal.
As Duffy tries to chip away at Levine’s credibility, the lawyer used the credit-card statement to suggest that Levine’s memory of that first meeting was suspect because he showed up at the party after leaving a drug binge.
Levine acknowledged that the charge on his credit card was likely legitimate, but repeatedly insisted that he did not remember being at the hotel on that day and considered it unlikely. Credit-card transactions are not always recorded on the same day a charge is actually made.
This morning, Duffy questioned Levine about more charges he incurred at the Radisson. On Saturday, Oct. 26, exactly one week before the dinner party, Levine’s credit-card statement reflected a $1,077 charge at the Radisson, and exactly a week before that there was another $1021 charge there.
Duffy appears to be trying to suggest that Levine had a regular Saturday thing at the Radisson with his drug buddies. In earlier testimony, Levine said the group would get together and party once or twice a month at the Lincolnwood hotel, and always on weekdays. Levine said he tried to hide his secret drug life from his family and wanted to be home and clear-headed on the weekends.”

Rezko Trial transcripts.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-rezko-court-story-7,0,5224754.htmlstory

 

 

Do Larry Sinclair’s allegations of a drug and sex encounter with Barack Obama in November, 1999 seem so far fetched?
 

From the Citizen Wells blog April 30, 2008.

“A comment was just posted on this blog. I recognize the poster from this blog and others I have posted on. Delenn has stated in the past that she was a chef and restaurant owner in Chicago and heard many rumors about Obama. Below is her comment about the Rezko trial, names being withheld and under reporting of the trial:

“Living in the Chicago area and being the “victim” of Chicago news media, I noticed early on in the Rezko trial that U.S. District Judge Amy St. Eve quashed mention of politicians’ names except for a chosen few… so we have “Politician A,” “Poltician B,” and on and on down the alphabet. Judge St. Eve also ruled to keep jurors’ identities secret… which more than anything attests to the known potential for violence coming from those associated with Rezko, Levine, and likely from the political machines involved. And Judge St. Eve would not allow Levine to name names as to the identities of those present at the all-male parties involving drug use — parties attended by some of the city’s and state’s political powers-that-be as well as by those wanting favors. There was a “leak” months ago that Politician A is Governor Rod Blagojovich… but oddly no further identifying leaks materialized. Blagojovich has been candid in the past about his interest in running for US president — I think the “leak” was a way to shut him down, and frankly I believe that he was shut down to open the way for Obama’s candidacy, if not in 2008, then in 2012. I don’t know how coverage of this trial has been played elsewhere, but here it’s been curiously underplayed — odd indeed, considering the Chicago news media’s normal tendency to over-cover any major stories based in the area. I’ve suspected since early on in the trial that the under-coverage, and possibly even some of the court’s rulings regarding testimony, have been connected to Obama’s candidacy. Add to this that I haven’t seen a single television news story concerning the allegations of money laundering involving Robert Blackwell and Barack Obama and… well, the word “fishy” isn’t strong enough by half. The scents of coverup and collusion here in Chicagoland simply reek.””

Article

Politician A

Politician B

For the Blagojevich trial to be legitimate, for the charges in the indictment to be substantiated, Stuart Levine will take the stand, just as he did in the Tony Rezko trial. The question is, will Levine be restricted from naming politicians?

Will Obama’s name be mentioned with regularity in the Blagojevich trial, just as Blagojevich’s name was mentioned during the Rezko trial?

 

Footnote: For those really paying attention, you noticed that Larry Sinclair came out with his allegations of a drug and sex encounter with Obama months before Stuart Levine gave his testimony.

Blagojevich trial, Update, May 7, 2010, Blagojevich lawyers seek trial delay, Supreme Court ruling, Judge James Zagel

Blagojevich trial, Update, May 7, 2010, Blagojevich lawyers seek trial delay

From the Chicago Tribune May 7, 2010.

“Blago lawyers go to appeals court in last-ditch bid to delay corruption trial”

“Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s lawyers have gone to a federal appeals court in a last-ditch effort to delay his corruption trial.

Blagojevich’s lawyers asked the appeals court to order trial Judge James Zagel to postpone the start of trial until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on challenges to the federal law barring officials from denying taxpayers their honest services.”

Read more:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/sns-ap-il–blagojevich-corruptioncase,0,7570538.story

Blagojevich trial, William Cellini, Testimony, Blagojevich Rezko Obama corruption buddies, Pay to play politics

Blagojevich trial, William Cellini, Testimony, Blagojevich Rezko Obama corruption buddies

The Blagojevich defense team is trying to bar testimony from convicted Blagojevich corruption buddies who have not been sentenced yet. There are so many to choose from.

From the Chicago Tribune, November 16, 2008.

” Connections could touch every somebody”

“To fully appreciate our politics you’ve got to look at the connections. Sadly, this task is beyond the national press and some locals besotted with our renowned vintage, Combine Kool Aid.
But you readers have the mental agility to follow along.
So as U.S. District Judge James Zagel accepted the not guilty plea, Cellini stood with his defense lawyer, Dan Webb.
“I had a glass of beer last night,” Cellini told Zagel, saying he had no problem following the court proceedings. The three talked as if they knew each other well. They do.
Cellini is accused of helping shake down a Hollywood producer and politically connected Chicago investor Thomas Rosenberg for $1.5 million in campaign cash for Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Cellini also is accused as a point man in a plot to remove U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald as federal prosecutor.”

“Cellini really began to pile up the cash when then-Gov. Thompson gave him a state gaming license. Webb and Zagel were young prosecutors under then-U.S. Atty. Thompson. Later, Zagel was director of the state’s Department of Revenue under Thompson. Webb ran the State Police.
Everybody knows somebody. So, no, Illinois politics isn’t a Robert Ludlum novel.
Illinois is Six Degrees of Bill Cellini.”

“The Combine wants Fitzgerald promoted out of town. But President-elect Barack Obama has promised newspaper editorial boards he would keep Fitzgerald in Chicago to fight political corruption.
That’s the same President-elect Obama with Mayor Daley’s guy Rahm Emanuel as his chief of staff, and another Daley guy, David Axelrod, as Obama’s chief strategist. The mayor’s brother Billy is one of Obama’s chief economic advisers. Whew!
Some political analysts become quite upset when “Daley machine” and “Obama” are mentioned in my column. They feel compelled to give me a vigorous corrective. But this same Flat Earth society denied the existence of a Combine for years, then shut up for a while when Obama’s real estate fairy Tony Rezko was convicted in the federal government’s Operation Board Games probe.

“The case exposed the Combine in detail, illustrating how Republican and Democratic insiders stacked state pensi”on boards to reap millions upon millions in pension investment fees. The Cellini case is fruit of Rezko’s tree.
It’s nice to be connected when things are going well, but since Fitzgerald arrived, things haven’t gone well. Some are sweating the Cellini indictment, like state Sen. James DeLeo (D-How You Doin?).
DeLeo has not been charged with anything. But the last thing he wants is his friend Cellini facing years in prison. Does Cellini have a good singing voice? Who knows?”

Read more:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/chi-kass-cellini-bdnov16,0,4612076.column?page=1

To learn more about Rod Blagojevich, Tony rezko, Barack Obama, et al and the events leading up to the Blagojevich trial visit:

Blagojevich Trial 101