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Rate the SafeSpeed response to the Sandoval plea deal

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* Here you go…

We are shocked by the information in today’s plea agreement and the betrayal of public trust both by Sen. Sandoval and a person who had an interest in the company, who was not authorized by the company to engage in any illegal behavior or make any commitments or contributions on behalf of the company or its executives. It appears both individuals committed crimes without SafeSpeed’s knowledge and in violation not only of the law but of SafeSpeed’s culture. We are shocked and saddened by that allegation. We are fully committed to investigating these matters and sharing any information we find with federal authorities. We applaud the government for rooting out corruption.

You might want to read the recent open letter to Comptroller Susana Mendoza penned by SafeSpeed CEO Nikki Zollar before you proceed. Click here.

* Also, the government chose to include this passage in the plea deal

CW-1 told SANDOVAL that CW-1 had provided half of Company A’s annual campaign contribution, and SANDOVAL said it was not a problem for Company A’s President to break up the annual contribution into two contributions because CW-1 said Company A’s President did not want the contribution to “shout out,” meaning raise a red flag.

Keep in mind that people claiming things doesn’t mean somebody actually said what was claimed.

…Adding… Tribune

“I used my office as state senator to help SafeSpeed — er, company A … (and) be its protector in the Illinois Senate and influence other officials to roll out the red-light camera program in Illinois,” Sandoval said.

Prosecutors did not name the SafeSpeed representative who bribed Sandoval, referring to him in the plea agreement only as Cooperating Witness-1. Several sources familiar with the investigation identified the informant for the Tribune as Omar Maani, a Burr Ridge businessman who is one of SafeSpeed’s founders and biggest rainmakers.

posted by Rich Miller
Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:39 pm

Comments

  1. There’s nothing more they really could have said. This isn’t an easy situation for any company to be in.

    Comment by Steve Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:43 pm

  2. 5/10

    In a vacuum, the score is much lower but I’m grading on a curve considering what a tough position the company is in.

    Comment by yeah Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:48 pm

  3. === We are fully committed to investigating these matters…===

    “We’ll take it from here”

    - FBI, maybe.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:48 pm

  4. While there is nothing else that could have been said, it would have been nice to hear them say “We did what we had to do to sell our product–bribing politicians in the price of doing business in Illinois; if we didn’t do it, then another company would have.” I mean, it would have hosed them, but at least it would be closer to the truth than what they said.

    Comment by Don Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:48 pm

  5. Rating: 5/5 baloney sandwiches.

    Comment by Three Dimensional Checkers Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:49 pm

  6. I give it a 7 out of 10.

    If you want to direct attention to CW-1, you have to give us a name. “CW-1 has been identified by news outlets as Omar Maani, a major Sandoval campaign donor.” Two point deduction.

    The first sentence is almost a run-on. I understand you want any quote to include the exculpatory phrase, but that quote is not gonna get printed with that phrase included. One point deduction.

    Comment by Thomas Paine Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:58 pm

  7. “We are shocked by the information in today’s plea agreement, we thought we had a fool-proof system, and shocked by the betrayal of Marty. Marty was a person who had an interest in the company, and an interest in making a couple bucks too. It was what it was.

    Marty was not authorized by the company to engage in any illegal behavior or make any commitments or contributions on behalf of the company or its executives, unless they were a ‘friend of ours’ and were part of the scam all along.

    It appears individuals committed crimes, and without SafeSpeed’s knowledge, and are gonna flip on folks that may have taken part in our sweet thing, in violation of SafeSpeed’s culture.

    We are shocked and saddened that it’s “all over”. We are fully committed to investigating these matters and sharing any information we find with federal authorities so we can get a choice seat on the bus of cooperation.

    We applaud the government for finding out for us who screwed this sweet deal up.

    - Not SafeSpeed, but total snark.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 3:59 pm

  8. ==We are shocked by the information…==

    Yeah, no. “Disappointed” perhaps, “embarrassed” hopefully, “dismayed” almost certainly. But “shocked”? Not bloody likely.

    Comment by Responsa Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:03 pm

  9. Not sure how Zollar can claim total ignorance when she sees all the campaign cash gojng to Sandoval. This isn’t her first rodeo in Illinois.

    Comment by Regular democrat Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:21 pm

  10. “I am shocked- shocked- to find that gambling is going on in here”

    Comment by fs Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:21 pm

  11. “We are shocked that our bought (and paid for) senator refused to stay bought”

    Comment by Jocko Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:25 pm

  12. Unsafe… at any speed.

    Comment by Dotnonymous Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:34 pm

  13. These things are written by PR folks and then given to lawyers who completely rewrite them.
    Agree with the earlier point that it says everything that can be said, and I’ll add that it paints the picture of a bad actor working outside the company’s policies or knowledge. Who knows? Maybe it’s true.

    Comment by Father Ted Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:41 pm

  14. ==a person who had an interest in the company, who was not authorized by the company to engage in any illegal behavior==

    Do they have some associates that are authorized?

    Comment by May soon be required Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:48 pm

  15. Sas level 10/10, addressing the topic 5/10

    Comment by Alfred Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:48 pm

  16. 3/10. What controls will they put in to avoid being “shocked” in the future? e.g. accounting for the use of their own money, vetting their representatives, enforcing rules and policies. i.e. not deliberately turning a blind eye.

    Comment by walker Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:55 pm

  17. The Zollar dollar holler might spell collar.

    Comment by Amalia Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:58 pm

  18. May soon be required,
    Excellent point.

    A backup position will likely be “This specifically prohibited in our company handbook.”

    Comment by Downstate Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 4:59 pm

  19. At the top of this criminal enterprise is slimy attorneys and the Mafia running the operation and their mistake was involving Sandoval 😊

    Comment by Latina Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:01 pm

  20. SafeSpeed “culture”- really, Nikki???

    Comment by Friendly Bob Adams Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:02 pm

  21. Captain Renault would be impressed.

    Comment by ChrisB Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:15 pm

  22. I’m Shocked, Cotton.

    Comment by SAP Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:34 pm

  23. 1 of 5.

    == We are shocked by the information in today’s plea agreement… ==

    All I saw after that was the old meme of a dog on a couch with a ripped-up newspaper.
    “I’m just as surprised as you are.”
    Photo: https://twitter.com/K9Falo/status/660145630073876480/photo/1

    Comment by XonXoff Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:40 pm

  24. Nikki Zollar is another bad penny.

    Comment by Anonymous Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:53 pm

  25. The plea agreement says that Sandoval received $70K from a SafeSpeed cooperating witness. That’s a lot of money to have sitting in petty cash.

    Comment by Pundent Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 5:57 pm

  26. Nikki is lying

    Comment by Anon Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 7:19 pm

  27. We applaud rooting out corruption in our office

    Comment by Rabid Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 7:53 pm

  28. I rate this response We’ll Always Have Paris.

    Comment by Rich Hill Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 8:43 pm

  29. === penned by SafeSpeed CEO Nikki Zollar ===

    That letter reads like someone who thinks they’re safe from consequences because they’ve bought the right politicians who drafted it unaware that those politicians don’t want to die in prison in order to preserve SafeSpeed Culture.

    Comment by Candy Dogood Tuesday, Jan 28, 20 @ 10:24 pm

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