Former Chicago Democrat Alderman Ed Burke Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for Corruption

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Former Chicago Alderman Ed Burke, who was once one of the most powerful officials in the city, was handed a two-year prison sentence Monday after his conviction on corruption charges in December.

Burke was arrested on charges of federal racketeering, bribery, and extortion for using his powerful position at city hall to elicit lucrative contracts for his company by extorting businesses into hiring his law firm in exchange for favorable outcomes on requests for property tax appeals, business permits, and other city services.

On December 21, the former alderman was convicted on all 13 counts of racketeering; corruptly soliciting, demanding, accepting, or agreeing to accept things of value; using an interstate facility to promote unlawful activity; and attempted extortion.

The case was based heavily on many hours of secretly recorded videos and phone conversations with former Alderman Danny Solis, who agreed to serve as a mole after he was also arrested on corruption charges.

Burke was found guilty of trying to pressure the developers of Chicago’s Old Post Office, the owner of a Burger King in his Southwest Side ward, and the owner of a Binny’s beverage store on the Northwest Side into hiring his tax appeals firm.

Prosecutors had asked for a ten-year sentence for the now 80-year-old Burke.

However, on Monday, the former top Barack Obama ally was handed two years in jail and has been told he has until September 23 to report to begin his sentence, according to WLS-TV in Chicago.

Burke is just one of nearly 30 Chicago area politicians who have been charged with federal corruption charges in just the last few years.

The list of those indicted on corruption charges includes former Illinois Democrat House Speaker Michael Madigan, who held a lock on political power in Illinois for 40 years and was speaker for 38 years, from 1983 to 2021.

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