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Powerful Chicago alderman indicted for attempted extortion

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For many who don't live in Chicago, the indictment of Alderman Ed Burke may be a minor example of public corruption in a corrupt city.

But there is nothing minor about Ed Burke.  He has served as an alderman since 1969, when Richard J. Daley not only ruled the city of Chicago and Cook County with an iron fist, but was a Democratic Party kingmaker, controlling more than a dozen congressmen and having a huge say in national politics.

Over the decades, Burke amassed unparalleled influence – and got hugely rich in the process.  Everyone in the city knew he was dirty.  The only question was, would the feds ever gather enough evidence to put him away?  Burke has watched over the decades as dozens of his city council colleagues were marched off to prison.  Now, it seems, it's his turn.

In late November, the FBI raided his City Hall office, as well as the offices of his law firm.  Agents returned to search his law offices again in December.  What they found led to the incredible scene in a Chicago courtroom as the prosecutor read out charges and Burke stood stoically listening.  Those charges included the attempted extortion of a business-owner that has ensnared not only Burke, but one of the major candidates running for mayor of Chicago.:snip:

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Better late than never I guess. He's 75 years old and has been living large on his corruption for years.

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Just discovered: 'Chicago's most powerful alderman' used ‘burner’ cell phones

It is a sign of the depth of governmental corruption of our age in America that the distinctions between government and gangsterism are blurring.  Now, news comes from Chicago that federal investigators who have already indicted  Aldreman Edward M. Burke on 14 counts of corruption have discovered that "Chicago's most powerful alderman" used a series of “burner” cell phones that he assigned a staff member to buy for him.

If you are not a viewer of police dramas, a burner phone is a cheap cell phone with an anonymous contract for pay-as-you-go cell phone usage. Burners enable drug dealers and other criminals to evade wiretap warrants because their ownership of the cell phone number is not available to authorities. It is a gangster tactic.:snip:

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3 hours ago, Valin said:

If only they had such an investigation after Katrina :blink:

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