Jury Convicts Powerful Chicago Democrat On 13 Federal Corruption Charges

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Julianna Frieman Contributor
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A jury convicted former Chicago Alderman Ed Burke on Thursday on 13 federal corruption charges.

Burke was found guilty of racketeering, bribery and attempted extortion following six weeks of a federal corruption trial, the New York Post (NYP) reported. The 79-year-old was convicted on 13 of the 14 charges brought against him, according to the outlet.

Burke was indicted for using his Chicago City Council position to bring business from private developers to his own law firm, according to the outlet. He reportedly targeted the developer 601W Companies LLC of New York, which was working on a $600 million renovation to Chicago’s Old Post Office, a Burger King restaurant and the liquor store chain Benny’s Beverage Depot.

“Did we land the, uh, tuna?” Burke reportedly asked former Alderman Danny Solis, who wore a wire for two years as federal investigators probed the case. Another recording captured Burke saying the developers could “go fuck themselves” if they believed they would receive his favorable treatment.

The recordings captured Burke, who was accused of shutting down the Burger King remodel, making comments about Jewish people and his influence, according to the outlet. Burke, who is Roman Catholic, said Jewish people “deal with Jews to the exclusion of everyone else … unless there’s a reason for them to use a Christian” in reference to the lead developer of the Old Post Office renovation project.

Burke was also accused of threatening to obstruct raising admission fees at Chicago’s Field Museum following its failure to grant his recommended candidate, the daughter of a former alderman, an internship, the NYP reported. The disgraced Democrat repeatedly insisted on his ability to help 601W Companies LLC of New York in its Amtrak dispute due to his connection with a rail operator board member. (RELATED: FBI Raids Home Of Top Eric Adams Fundraiser)

Burke faces a minimum sentence of 110 years in federal prison, according to the outlet. Developer Charles Cui and Peter Andrews, Burke’s political aide, were tried alongside Burke, who resigned in May, the NYP reported. Andrews was found not guilty of all charges, while Cui was found guilty of bribery charges.