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Tristano plea agreement

Wednesday, Mar 29, 2006

Here it is. (pdf file)

In order to conceal the expenditure and conversion of State resources for the benefit of political campaigns, defendant implemented a procedure by which employee salaries were paid in part by HRCC and by the use of compensatory leave. Defendant awarded compensatory leave to certain Minority Leader’s Office staff in order for those staff members to work on political campaigns while on paid absences from the State. Those employees were not authorized to use such compensatory leave for purposes other than campaign work. Defendant knew that the partial HRCC payments and the compensatory leave did not fully account for the campaign work performed by State employees.

Defendant also knew and it was reasonably foreseeable to him that State employees, supervised by defendant, submitted travel vouchers to the State in which the employees falsely claimed travel expenses accrued as official State business, when in truth and in fact, the employees’ travel was related to political campaigns. Defendant signed, and thereby approved, such travel vouchers, including a voucher that caused the State to mail payment to a State employee on or about June 8, 2000. […]

In or about 2000, in the Northern District of Illinois and elsewhere, defendant did knowingly conspire with Roger Stanley and others known and unknown to commit extortion affecting commerce, namely to obtain money from a Real Estate Partnership, with the partnership’s consent, having induced said consent under color of official right. […]

Roger Stanley, a partner of the Real Estate Partnership, agreed to provide, and did provide, a consulting job paid by the Partnership to an individual campaigning as a Republican candidate for a Illinois House seat in downstate Illinois (Candidate A). The purpose of the consulting job was to generate necessary income for Candidate A while Candidate A was campaigning for office. In connection with the campaign assistance to Candidate A, defendant TRISTANO agreed to assist the Village’s efforts to obtain the State grants, and did in fact recommend, as Chief of Staff to the Minority Leader, that discretionary grant funds be awarded to the Village. The State awarded to the Village approximately $1.3 million in grants funding the real estate development in or about 2000. […]

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Anon - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 1:24 pm:

    I sincerely hope that someone in the responsible media will dig around to find out which candidates beneffitted from Mr. Tristano’s admitted illegalities. Rich, get goin!

  2. - Anon - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 1:29 pm:

    They were so inept that I wouldn’t be suprised if each candidate they illegally helped using state payrollers LOST.

  3. - PerryMason - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 1:41 pm:

    Too bad Bush Justice Dept took so long and we had to skip ‘96 ‘94 campaigns and the years the U of I paid for campaign work too.There would be some more fun facts

  4. - Pat collins - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 3:15 pm:

    They were so inept that I wouldn’t be suprised if each candidate they illegally helped using state payrollers LOST.

    No, Lee was very good at working against conservatives, either incumbents or primary challengers.

    I bet I was represented by someone who benefitted….

  5. - B Hicks - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 4:07 pm:

    It certainly will be interesting.

  6. - Tim - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 4:09 pm:

    Here we go, it’s always people working against “conservatives.” Funny how the far right likes to play the victim card only when it applies to them

  7. - Beowulf - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 4:10 pm:

    Actually, anon @ 1:29 you are correct. I can’t say with certainty that all of them lost but I do know that at least one of them lost. How do I know? Because I know one of the young kid’s that was working for Tristano at that time. The kid came to me to tell me what they (and the other young kids working there at the time) were being told to do.
    This kid was a good kid who was fresh out of college and filled with idealism and spirit. Tristano (and others there) broke them of that spirit and idealism. This kid finally left their job there rather than continue to do what they were told was simply “the way politics in Illinois works.” They tried to make it seem that it was okay to this young person by saying, “The Democrats do the same thing. It is how things get done in Illinois.”

    After the young kid quit their job and came to me, I told them to go tell the FBI what they saw taking place. I convinced them that the FBI was more interested in going after the Big Fish rather than the little minnows that were simply doing what they were told to do. I also told them that the FBI operates under the idea that “the first one that gets on the bus gets the best seat”. My young friend heeded my advice and talked to the FBI. They also conveyed my message to several of their former Republican young and idealistic co-workers. I told them that “One person can make a difference if you are willing to pay the price to do the right thing.”

    I forwarded (with pride) the article in the Chicago Tribune today about Tristano getting sentenced and going to jail to my young friend. I also enclosed the words, “One person can make a difference if they are willing to pay the price to do the right thing.”

    I won’t mention the candidate’s name that lost because I believe that they are a good person and nothing would be gained by naming them. They may not even have known about all that was taking place. They lost their election. Perhaps, that was their pennance if indeed they were aware of what was happening at that time.

    I do know that I am very proud of a certain young person who courageously came forth to tell the truth without knowing at the time what the consequences would be for their act of honesty. It makes me retain my faith in the future of Illinois government. Patrick Fitzgerald helps to makes this possible.

  8. - Shocked - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 7:35 pm:

    Nope, it was the guy running in the a Southern Seat, wasn’t Bost, may have been the guy running against Terry Deering in 96

    Janikowski or something like that

  9. - formerGOPstaffer - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 7:57 pm:

    We can only hope this leads to Daniels and quickly. This was going on for a long time before Tritano. What I’d like to hear is why the media never dug into this before. Was it because their sources for other stories might dry up? What was going on with House GOP staffers during campaign season was not a secret. There still still seems to be a real reluctance to touch this story in any big way.

  10. - Gregor Samsa - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 8:31 pm:

    That’s because the circle is often too small; if you squeal and give any detail, it becomes too easy to figure out your identity, then you get reprisals. The bigger an illicit operation is, the easier it is to take it down.

  11. - Not Tellin - Wednesday, Mar 29, 06 @ 10:03 pm:

    Crain’s broke this story about four years ago. During spring 2000, Daniels staffers worked for O’Connor, Kosel, for a Salvi (who BTW anon 1:29, lost against Rep. Franks) and maybe some other GOPs. Search under those names (registration req.)

  12. - Former GOP Staffer 13 - Thursday, Mar 30, 06 @ 2:19 pm:

    You are getting warmer, but it was all over the state and not just in 2000. It was Peters, Jankowski, O’Conner, Zickus, Ryan and others. I know because I was there…

  13. - Veritas - Friday, Mar 31, 06 @ 12:47 pm:

    As I’ve stated before, and Rich seems to have deleted, Daniels had a number of staffers (varying between 3 to 5) working on the Tom Berns campaign in Urbana in 2000.

  14. - Veritas - Friday, Mar 31, 06 @ 12:48 pm:

    My mistake Rich, it looks like my postings just took awhile to load on this end.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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