Criminal law

The ComEd Four bribery trial is set to end as the shutdowns begin


Prosecutors are set to begin closing arguments April 24 in the trial of four people accused of bribing one of Illinois’ most powerful politicians in an effort to advance legislation critical to the economic success of the Edison Commonwealth.

The bribes were allegedly paid to former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (D) indirectly, through lucrative ComEd jobs given to his friends and associates.

The jury heard from State legislator And Former General Counsel of Exelon Corporation on Madigan’s influence, among other things, while the defense attempted to argue that they lacked any corrupt intent and that their activities were just plain pressure.

ComEd entered into a related deferred trial agreement in July 2020, after acknowledging the scheme and agreeing to pay $200 million to avoid criminal charges. as part of an agreementComEd acknowledged a statement of facts detailing the alleged scheme.

The indictment against Anne Bramaggiore, John Hooker, Michael McClain and Jay Doherty came just a few months later in November 2020.

It is one of a series of cases brought by prosecutors in the Northern District of Illinois that reach corruption in the United States The highest levels state government in recent years.

ComEd, a subsidiary of Exelon Corp., is the largest utility company in the state, employing thousands of people throughout Illinois.

The accusers

Bramaggiore served as CEO of ComEd from 2012 until 2018, when she was promoted to Senior Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer at Exelon. Hooker was an external lobbyist for the company after retiring from his position as executive vice president of legislative and external affairs in 2012.

Doherty’s consulting firm, JD Doherty & Associates, allegedly acted as a go-between to help hide imprisoned payments to Madigan’s friends and associates. McClain, himself a former Illinois representative, was an old friend of Madigan’s and had longtime access to the politician, according to trial testimony.

Madigan, a part of Chicago’s political infrastructure since the 1980s, has served as state president longer than any other state in US history, and for a time led the state’s Democratic Party. He was Accused McClain was separately charged with racketeering in March 2022, with a trial date set for April 2024.

Prosecutors say former ComEd executives and lobbyists knew he controlled the state’s legislative agenda and that they believed they would not be able to pass the legislation they wanted to pass without his support.

Both defendants face conspiracy charges.

In addition, Bramaggiore and McClain each face four counts of bribery, and Doherty and Hooker each face one count. The four are charged with four counts of record-keeping violations under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

After weeks of working to undermine the prosecution’s main case, which included several recordings made by a collaborator, Fidel Marquez, Bramaggiore and Hooker took the stand.

Marquez, who served as senior vice president of government at ComEd, begged Guilty of conspiracy in September 2020.

Two outside lobbyists, McClain and Doherty, refused to exercise their Fifth Amendment right not to testify. The defense rested on April 19, and the jury was adjourned until Monday.

McLean is represented by Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale PC. Pramaggiore is represented by Sidley Austin LLP. Hooker is represented by Monico and Spivak. Doherty is represented by Gabriel Rose Sansonetti.

The issue is United States v. McLeanN.D. Ill., No. 1:20-cr-00812, agenda 4/24/23.


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