A federal grand jury has indicted former House Speaker Michael Madigan's longtime chief of staff, Tim Mapes, on charges of perjury and attempted obstruction of justice.
Mapes, 66, was indicted for allegedly "providing false material declarations under oath to a federal grand jury and attempting to obstruct its investigation into allegations of public corruption."
He was charged with one count of making false declarations before a grand jury and one count of attempted obstruction of justice, according to the indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago.
According to the indictment, Mapes had been granted immunity to testify before a grand jury in an investigation into "possible violations of federal criminal law" involving Madigan and one of his associates.
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The investigation centered on accusations Madigan and an individual acting on his behalf attempted to "obtain for others private jobs, contracts, and monetary payments, including from Commonwealth Edison (“ComEd”), the largest electric utility in Illinois, to influence and reward the Speaker in the Speaker’s official capacity," according to the grand jury.
Mapes was given immunity for his testimony "except for perjury, giving a false statement, or otherwise failing to comply with the immunity order."
But according to the indictment, Mapes testified on March 31 "and knowingly made false material declarations in response to several questions about a consultant’s relationship with the Speaker from 2017 to 2019."
The indictment alleges Mapes denied knowing that a consultant was acting on behalf of or working for Madigan during those years, when, in fact, he did.
Mapes' attorneys, however, said in a statement that he "testified truthfully in the grand jury."
"His honest recollections-in response to vague and imprecise questions about events that allegedly took place many years ago- simply do not constitute perjury," the statement from attorneys Andrew Porter and Katie Hill read. "This case, of course, is not about him—but about the government’s continued pursuit of his former boss. Tim Mapes has in no way engaged in obstruction of justice, and looks forward to prevailing at trial when all of the facts are aired."
The obstruction charge is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison, while the false declaration charge carries a maximum sentence of five years.
Mapes' testimony took place after Madigan announced his resignation following 50 years in office.
Madigan's loss of the speakership and his subsequent resignation came after two former ComEd executives and two consultants, one a longtime Madigan associate and confidant, were indicted in November on multiple federal charges related to the alleged scheme to influence Madigan - identified in the indictment as "Public Official A" - in exchange for legislation favorable to the utility giant, prosecutors say.
Those charges were levied months after federal prosecutors in July filed a deferred prosecution agreement with ComEd in which investigators revealed that the utility company agreed to pay $200 million dollars in fines and admitted to arranging jobs and payments for associates of an elected official, referred to only as “Public Official A," from 2011 to 2019 to curry favor with the official.
Madigan has not been charged with any criminal wrongdoing and has repeatedly denied the allegations laid out by prosecutors, saying in part that if the conspiracy to influence him did occur, "it was never made known" to him and if it had been, it "would have been profoundly unwelcome."
Mapes could not immediately be reached for comment.