chicago politics

Arraignment Dates Set for Munoz, Ald. Daley Thompson in Federal Corruption Cases

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Arraignment dates have been set for former Chicago Ald. Ricardo Munoz and current Ald. Patrick Daley Thompson in connection to separate federal charges filed against the lawmakers.

Munoz, who was indicted Thursday on federal fraud charges, will next appear in court on Wednesday, while Daley Thompson, who faces charges related to a bank in the Bridgeport neighborhood, will appear in court May 13, according to federal prosecutors.

Munoz is accused of using thousands of dollars from a political fund he chaired to pay for personal expenses, then lying about it. He is facing 15 counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering in connection with the case, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The former lawmaker is accused of using the PAC’s funds to transfer money to his own accounts, and is also accused of making cash withdrawals for personal use. He is accused of then lying about the withdrawals on financial disclosure forms.

Reached by phone Thursday afternoon, Munoz declined to comment on the indictment.

Each count of wire fraud could carry a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison while the money laundering charge has a maximum sentence of 10 years, officials said.

Daley Thompson, the grandson of former Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley and the nephew of former Mayor Richard M. Daley, has represented the city’s 11th ward since 2015.

The alderman faces charges that he allegedly filed false tax returns and lied about more than $200,000 in loans he received from Washington Federal Bank for Savings, which was shut down, according to prosecutors.

One or more of the loans was allegedly never reported or fully paid back, according to the indictment. The loans were secured before Daley Thompson was elected to office, according to the indictment.

For the fifth consecutive census, Illinois has lost a Congressional seat, and NBC 5’s Mary Ann Ahern has more on what we learned as census data was released Monday.

According to the indictment, after Washington Federal was shut down in 2017 and the FDIC tried to obtain repayment from Thompson in 2018, "he falsely stated that he owed only $110,000 and that those funds were for home improvement, when Thompson knew he had actually received $219,000 and that $110,000 of it was paid by the bank to a law firm as Thompson’s capital contribution."

In a statement, Daley Thompson said he was "very disappointed by the Justice Department’s decision to return an indictment against me today for inadvertent tax preparation errors and my incorrect memory about the amount of a personal bank loan."

"I discovered the tax error and paid the small amount of taxes I owed," he wrote in the statement. "When the bank provided me the documents showing the actual amount of the loan, I promptly paid it back. Both matters were resolved before there was any government investigation."

Daley Thompson said he remains "100 percent dedicated to serving the people of Chicago to the best of my ability. I have complete confidence in our system of justice and look forward to showing that the accusation is false."

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