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4 Ex-Officials Guilty in Chicago Job Scheme

July 07, 2006|From the Associated Press

CHICAGO — A former top aide to Mayor Richard M. Daley and three other former city workers were convicted Thursday in a scheme to load the city payroll with campaign workers.

Robert A. Sorich, once Daley's patronage chief, was convicted of two counts of mail fraud.

Prosecutors said the defendants rigged interviews and falsified documents to hide the fact that city officials were violating a court order that barred consideration of political affiliation in awarding most city jobs.

Witnesses testified that Sorich, 43, dictated who would get which city jobs, and that people without political clout were frozen out.

Sorich's attorneys said he made recommendations on who should be hired with an eye toward ensuring diversity. They denied he ever forced the hiring of any specific applicant.

Daley has not been accused of wrongdoing in the case.

Sorich's former aide, Timothy McCarthy, 35, was convicted of two counts of mail fraud. Patrick R. Slattery, 42, a former sanitation official, was convicted of one mail fraud count. Another former official, John Sullivan, 38, was convicted of one count of lying to an FBI agent.

U.S. District Judge David H. Coar set sentencing for Nov. 15.

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