Ed Vrdolyak Gets Out of Jail

He pleaded guilty in 2008 and sentenced to five years of probation

By Mary Ann Ahern
|  Thursday, Nov 17, 2011  |  Updated 12:44 PM CDT
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Ed Vrdolyak Gets Out of Jail

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Former Ald. Ed Vrdolyak | Indicted: 2007. Earlier this year, Vrdolyak was sentenced to five years probation, a $50,000 fine and 2,500 hours of community service for arranging a $1.5 million payoff in a real estate deal when he was still in office. "Fast Eddie," as he was called, is known for the Council Wars that challenged Harold Washington's first term as mayor.

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An ex-Chicago alderman whose skills as a backroom political dealmaker earned him the nickname "Fast Eddie" has been released from federal prison.

Edward Vrdolyak was released from a facility in Terre Haute, Ind., Thursday. Bureau of Prisons spokesman Marvin Pitt says Vrdolyak served a 10-month sentence in a $1.5 million real estate kickback scheme.

He pleaded guilty in 2008 and sentenced to five years of probation. But federal prosecutors appealed and another judge re-sentenced him to 10 months prison and a $250,000 fine.

Vrdolyak led an opposition bloc to Mayor Harold Washington during the so-called "Council Wars" of the 1980s.

He's been out of politics for more than a decade, but has remained prominent in Chicago, where he's often referred to by his nickname.

The former alderman will have to spend nights at the halfway house and will be allowed out during the day. 

His lawyer Mike Monico says the prison term "was very difficult" but that Vrodylak "was a source of comfort" to fellow prisoner, ex-Gov. George Ryan. 

They apparently had many meals together. 

Monico describes Vrodylak "as a strong fellow who's been thru a lot."

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