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Brief: Blagojevich advisor pleads guilty to fraud

9 September, 2009

The Chicago Sun-Times carried a story yesterday about Chris Kelly, former fundraiser and advisor to Rod Blagojevich.  I did not see it anywhere as I browsed the news – which was mostly about Obama.      HERE

During a hearing yesterday, Kelly admitted that he had committed several counts of fraud while his company was obtaining and providing roofing at O’Hare Airport.

In the 28-page plea, Kelly admits to a litany of fraud while his roofing company worked as a contractor at O’Hare, including working with an insider to rig bids and fraudulently win contracts. That insider is accused of inflating the budget numbers and, in return, Kelly paid him at least $450,000 in kickbacks, according to the plea.

Kelly admitted he doctored invoices as a way to divert money to pay off personal gambling and other debt, including to repay $700,000 convicted businessman Tony Rezko gave him to buy a home, according to charges.  (Bold emphasis mine)

These charges and the guilty plea are separate from the case in which Kelly and Blagojevich will be tried next year for racketeering and extortion in connection with Obama’s 2008 soon-to-be vacant state senate seat.

An additional link for those of you still following the twists, turns, and pleadings of the former governor. At the Chicago Tribune HERE

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