Chicago is a corrupt city and while it could be a coincidence that the Feds are all over the corrupt politicians there since President Trump won the election, they sure are not playing around anymore.
They have indicted many top Chicago politicians in the last few months, like Ed Burke a longtime power-broker, and have raided the offices of his underlings.
The feds also flipped a prominent alderman who wore a wire on his city hall colleagues. The city leaders are all waiting on needles and this new guilty plea will not help soothe their anxiety.
The ex-Teamsters boss took a deal and flipped and he certainly knows where all the bodies are buried.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported that a onetime labor leader with ties to several prominent Illinois politicians pleaded guilty in federal court on Tuesday in a lesser-known extortion case that still threatens to reach deep into the state’s halls of power.
As part of his deal, former Teamster chief John T. Coli will cooperate with the feds in other investigations.
Coli confessed to taking part in a scheme to extort $325,000 from Cinespace Chicago Film Studios, the clout-heavy studio that is home to such hit TV shows as “Chicago Fire” and “Empire.” He pleaded guilty to receiving a prohibited payment and filing a false income tax return.
He demanded routine cash payments to allow the studio to continue to operate, the feds claimed.
Once, when he was told his quarterly cash extortion payments might stop, Coli said of the company, “We’ll shut it down. We’ll shut it down within an hour. I will f——— have a picket line out here,” as the feds claimed.
Later, John T. Coli, who was secretly recorded by the feds, told the head of the studio to get rid of its chief financial officer.
“There’s gonna be time-to-time unique things that are gonna come up that you’re gonna have to deal with . . . you can’t have a f——— rat in a wood pile. You can’t have a whistleblower here.”
Coli’s cooperation could net him a reduced prison sentence of about 20 months. Without it, he would’ve faced 8 years behind bars.
This case has simmered in the background for the last few years. Since then, the Chicago Sun-Times revealed that the case against Coli was built with the help of Cinespace President Alexander S. “Alex” Pissios, who wore a wire against him.
Pissios told authorities that John T. Coli introduced him to Gov. Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayors Richard M. Daley and Rahm Emanuel, as well as Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan and Illinois Senate President John Cullerton. They all received campaign contributions from organizations under John T. Coli’s control.
In August 2018, the grand jury that indicted Coli issued subpoenas to the office of Quinn’s successor, then-Gov. Bruce Rauner. It sought personnel files for Quinn’s campaign manager, Lou Bertuca, his press secretary, Brooke Anderson, and another Quinn administration official, John D’Alessandro.
The same grand jury separately issued a subpoena back in February for the personnel file and other records of state Sen. Thomas Cullerton, a cousin of the Senate president. John Cullerton appointed his cousin, who has worked for the Teamsters, as chairman of the Senate’s committee on labor.