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Levine’s secret life and a Rezko prediction

Wednesday, Feb 27, 2008

We’re going to break up this Rezko stuff into different posts because there is so much ground to cover today. Try to stick to the topic at hand in your comments. Thanks.

* Much of this sordid information about Stu Levine has already surfaced, but it’s still not very pretty

A source close to the case against Rezko says star government witness Stuart Levine led a secret life of illicit drugs and all-night sex parties, and may have a faulty memory. […]

The source said Levine is alleged to have led a “secret life” in which he allegedly engaged in all-night drug-fueled sex parties, some in hotels in Lincolnwood and Springfield. He also is alleged to have been seen using drugs in his office during business hours.

This allegedly happened while Levine was working for the federal government as its star witness against Rezko and other defendants, the source said.

I can’t help but wonder whether the feds knew about this activity at the time and covered up for Levine.

And, again, please avoid any speculation in comments. Thanks.

* The end of the story contained this prediction…

[CBS 2 legal analyst Irv Miller] says he would not be surprised if Rezko cuts a deal with the feds in the few days remaining before his trial. Such a deal would have him plead guilty to lesser charges in return for telling prosecutors everything he knows.

What do you think about that?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - He makes Ryan Look like a Saint - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:29 am:

    He will turn over like Scott Fawell did to Ryan.

  2. - DumberThanYouThink - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:31 am:

    A trial would so much fun and tell us a lot about how the Administration develops its policy initiatives — long range and short range
    We don’t want to be cheated. All the secrets will stay with the G

  3. - tubbfan - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:32 am:

    If the government’s case is based heavily on Levine’s testimony and credible experts can poke holes in his memory to the satisfaction of a jury, then it may be prudent. How long is TR facing as a maximum sentence under the current charges?

  4. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:33 am:

    I can’t see why he wouldn’t make a deal. I think the feds overall conviction rate is somewhere north of 90%. They don’t indict unless they have you.

  5. - DumberThanYouThink - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:36 am:

    Would we be cheated out of knowing who was on the SPI “party” guest list….that would be a great QOTD for Capt. Fax….
    ….The source said Levine is alleged to have led a “secret life” in which he allegedly engaged in all-night drug-fueled sex parties, some in hotels in Lincolnwood and Springfield. He also is alleged to have been seen using drugs in his office during business hours.

    This allegedly happened while Levine was working for the federal government as its star witness against Rezko and other defendants, the source said.

  6. - Siyotanka - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:40 am:

    It will be VERY interesting if Rez rolls on his buds. It could take down some very promenent people…not to say the Gov. Hum?

  7. - Anon - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:41 am:

    How can this man be trusted? Rich, your fax yesterday was a very fair report on the case. With details of Mr. Levine’s life coming out, and his credibility taking major hits, why would Rezko cut a deal now? Things are finally looking up for him. If this case is dependant solely on the testimony of this drug using sex party thrower, why not stay the course and fight it out?

  8. - The Doc - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 9:54 am:

    Rezko should seriously consider a deal - the timing of the impending trial (read: Obama’s run for the WH) has the media swarming all over this. The non-stop press coverage would seem to only hurt his chances with a jury. Cut your losses, Tony!

  9. - Ghost - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 10:09 am:

    I think it all depends on what they have on tape and from other witness’s. If they can verify What levine says from outher sources, then the impact of his secret life is minimial. If Levine is the only source, then getting a heads up is critical.

    It looks like they can back up a portion of Levines testimony with other witnesses and tape recording, and a portion they just have levine. If the stuff they can backup is all solid they can use this to bootstrap the other testimony that has no other sources.

    The problem with attacking Levine for drug use is the dollar trail is still present. You can call levine all the names you want, but if the feds can point to the person who got the job, and show the money changing hands it does not matter how big a sex party levine had, Rezko is dead in the water.

    Follow the money as they say.

  10. - GOP - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 10:13 am:

    During the Ryan trial, I learned that it really doesn’t matter if the witness is credible or not. It matters little whether they are philanderers or drunks or drug addicts. I never saw so many people claim to be alcoholics (who weren’t) and girlfriends who knew absolutely nothing, testify as to what was supposedly the truth.

    I think that KJ should be very concerned because if there is smoke, the feds can make it a fire.

    Add that to a trial by a jury, by 12 of your “peers” picked out of the voting pool in Chicago, that actually hate politicians and the wealthy - chances of an acquital are slim.

    Like Dear Abby says, if something is too good to be true, it probably isn’t legit.

  11. - Muskrat - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 10:26 am:

    There are plenty of guys serving long-term prison sentences all over the country who were convicted on nothing but the words of admitted felons who testified “The defendant spontaneously confessed to me one day in the holding cell.” Being a druggie and living some cheeseball version of the disco years makes him a lousy person, but juries take the words of worse people all the time. And if there’s even a little corroborating evidence, Disco Stu could go a long way with the jury.

  12. - stienbeck - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 10:29 am:

    if he were going to flip he would’ve done it already

  13. - GA Watcher - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:02 am:

    From media reports, I get the sense that Mr. Rezko is an arrogant sort, not unlike Scott Fawell. It wouldn’t surprise me if he follows the same path that Fawell did, i.e. go to trial thinking he will beat the rap, but then try to cut a deal prior to sentencing. It didn’t work too well for Fawell, though, did it.

  14. - Just Because - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:03 am:

    I agree with ghost, follow the money, then it dont matter what Levine has done. I think he should cut a deal.

  15. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:03 am:

    Can you say Governor Quinn?

  16. - True Observer - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:18 am:

    Rezko knew how to reach all these politicians.

    All he has to do is reach one juror.

    And no one will ever know why and how it happened.

    Remember that juror in the Ryan case?

  17. - Been There - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:27 am:

    The difference with Rezko compared to Fawell is that he is already in jail and not out on bond. I think the feds thought he would be the same as Fawell and hold out until the trial and appeal were over. But I think they believe if Rezko sees the trial going against him he was going to skip town. Now that he is getting a taste of what life can be like for many years to come without having a chance to spend time with his family, he might decide to flip.

  18. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:48 am:

    Why do I have the feeling that Rezko is only one
    of a legion of wealthy businesspersons who used
    campaign contributions to gain access and influence over our Blago, contracts, the civil service, and various state boards and commissions.

    It is, after all the way the Democrats do business
    in Illinois and always have when they are in power. Republicans too, but they are not in power right now so even the most ardent lakefront liberal and Blago supporter can’t avoid the glare
    of Democratic corruption by blaming it on the Republicans.

    Despite their claims to the high ground in politics, those Democratic liberals are just as
    greedy and ethically “compromised” as any other
    Illinois pols. They’ll take your money. As much as you’ll give and with practically any conditions attached.

  19. - DumberThanYouThink - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 11:58 am:

    Speaking of liberals don’t forget Stu founds his way to IL govt via Jim Ryan and Leee A. Daniels
    check the board of elections web site. If they had kept their pal away from poor dumb Blaggo non of this would have happened
    See how easy that was?

  20. - electric boogaloo - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 12:44 pm:

    If TR were to flip he would have done so by now. Remember, he flew back into this country to face his fate when he could have stayed away. I’m starting to get annoyed with the Fed’s muscling.

  21. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 12:58 pm:

    Since Rezko retained his foreign citizenship (as well as U.S.), once convicted he may well be deported. That at least would get him out of the three ring circus this is.

  22. - Leigh - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 1:04 pm:

    Rezko knows if he is guilty. His attorneys probably have a pretty good idea what the prosecution has in store as well, why wouldn’t he cut a deal unless he truly feels he is innocent.

  23. - Snidely Whiplash - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 1:26 pm:

    I don’t know what going to sex parties would have to do with his credibility as a witness, but habitual drug use certainly would have an adverse impact. I really find it hard to believe someone of his age and standing could become what basically amounts to a junkie (outside of Hollyweird, that is). If it is true, I think it’s very sad for him, and potentially lethal for the government’s case against Rezko.

    I would also assume that they at least had an inkling about it and feel they have a strong enough case even without him.

  24. - Macbeth - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 1:33 pm:

    Is Rezko going to be involved somehow with the $1500 birthday/christening check to Ascardis (sp?)?

  25. - Garp - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 2:00 pm:

    I find it ironic that the defense will argue Levine may not be a credible witness because he was a drug addict but Blogo and Rezco found him credible enough to manage millions in pension funds. It either means they are complete idiots or needed a crook to get their share.

    If Rezco hasn’t made a deal, it is probably because the feds haven’t offered one he likes.

    I said long ago, the last thing Obama wants is this trial going on during the months before the election. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone reaches out to the Rezco camp and says cut the best deal now and if we win we will take care of you later.

  26. - Louis G. Atsaves - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 2:20 pm:

    If Levine was persuasive and sharp enough to move from the Republican side to the Democratic side following Blagojevich’s first win as governor, and then immediate work his way up as an insider by befriending Reszko and others, all while on drugs and engaging in sex parties or whatever, then he certainly will be persuasive and sharp enough to convince a jury.

    Since everyone is fixated on Levine being a star witness, when the other witnesses set the table it sounds like trouble for any defendant he testifies against.

  27. - Team Sleep - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 2:41 pm:

    Garp hit it right on the head. If Disco Stu was hopped up on drugs during this entire ordeal, shouldn’t Rezko, KJ, Cellini and Blago have exercised caution? And it was okay to make money with him then but now he’s not credible and needs to be scrutinized? Gimme a break. This is schoolyard baloney.

  28. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 2:42 pm:

    If he was that hopped up, none of the people that I know ever realized it. So, I think that’s not the greatest line of attack.

  29. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 3:34 pm:

    why not stay the course and fight it out?
    because the difference between pleading and fighting it out would probably be a difference of 5 to 1o additional years in prison.

  30. - A Citizen - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 3:53 pm:

    - steve schnorf -
    LOL - I think you are spending “OPM” other peoples money or in this case Rezko’s life/time. He’s 52 and risking “only” 5 to 10 extra years would be equal in quality time to a life sentence. He will likely take a deal, if offered, that allows him to be free as soon as feasible. Then I would expect he will leave the country, by business necessity, and live the good life elsewhere. Fight or Flight?

  31. - NIEVA - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 5:25 pm:

    Can you say Squeal like a pig??

  32. - Little Egypt - Wednesday, Feb 27, 08 @ 5:30 pm:

    I’m with Stienbeck. If Rez thought he could get out of jail, he would have already plea bargained. I don’t think he’s in the category of Fawell. Others up the ladder may be but not Rezko. I’m just hoping that Blago doesn’t plea bargain. I want to hear the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth from a trial.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Reader comments closed until Tuesday
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