Saturday, March 10, 2012

Feds Indict East Chicago School Treasurer For Bribery

U.S. Attorney David Capps of the Northern District of Indiana has announced the indictment of the treasurer for the East Chicago public school system, Francisco Ramirez on charges that he accepted bribes from a local building contractor in consideration for construction contracts with the school system. The government alleges that Gerardo "Jerry" Lozano performed free home improvement work during a several month period in 2008 on Ramirez' home in consideration for construction contracts with the school according to the Northwest Indiana Times.

In 2010, former East Chicago Mayor George Pabey was found guilty of conspiracy and theft charges for using city employees to perform free improvement work on his home and purchasing with city funds materials used for the home improvement work. A federal RICO lawsuit brought by the Indiana Attorney General's office resulted in a $108 million verdict against Pabey's predecessor, Robert Pastrick, in connection with the sidewalks-for-votes scandal. A vote fraud investigation also resulted in overturning the results of an election won by Pastrick over Pabey and the convictions of numerous persons who committed vote fraud to help secure a Democratic primary election win for Pastrick.

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