Long list of Illinois politicians convicted for corruption

December 7, 2011

By The Associated Press


Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich is just the most recent figure on a long list of Illinois politicians who have dealt with legal problems.

Here are some of the more memorable:

Rod Blagojevich — Governor from 2003 through 2009, when he became the first Illinois governor in history to be impeached. Convicted of numerous corruption charges Monday, including allegations that he tried to sell or trade President Barack Obama's old Senate seat.

George Ryan — Governor from 1999 through 2003. After leaving office, was convicted of racketeering for actions as governor and secretary of state. In November 2007, began serving 6 1/2 years in federal prison.
 


 

U.S. Rep. Dan Rostenkowski — Pleaded guilty to corruption charges and left office in 1995. Served 17 months in prison, but was pardoned by President Bill Clinton. Rostenkowski was a representative from 1959-95.

U.S. Rep. Mel Reynolds — Convicted of misconduct with a 16-year-old campaign volunteer and resigned in 1995. Served more than two years in prison. Later convicted on federal wire and bank fraud charges and sentenced to more than six years in prison. President Clinton commuted that sentence.

Dan Walker — Governor from 1973-1977. Pleaded guilty to bank fraud and other charges in 1987 related to his business activities after leaving office. Spent just over a year and a half in federal prison.
 


Otto Kerner — Governor from 1961-1968. Resigned to become judge, then was convicted of bribery related to his tenure as governor. Sentenced to three years in prison.

William G. Stratton — Governor from 1953-1961. Indicted after leaving office on income-tax evasion charges but was acquitted.

Lennington Small — Governor from 1921-1929. Indicted while in office on embezzlement charges but was acquitted.

Joel Matteson — Governor from 1853-1857. After leaving office, a Sangamon County court ruled that he owed the state more than $253,000 in connection with a scheme to pay government contractors. His property was sold at auction.

Secretary of State Paul Powell — Roughly $800,000 was found stuffed in shoe boxes Powell's home after he died in 1970.

Auditor Orville Hodge — Pleaded guilty in the 1950s to embezzling more than $1.5 million from the state while in office. He used the money to buy two planes, four automobiles and homes in Illinois and Florida.

Attorney General William Scott — Convicted of tax fraud and spent a year in prison in the 1980s. Was Illinois attorney general from 1969-80.


Photo Credits: Associated Press

Sources: The Associated Press; Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, Charles Wheeler, University of Illinois-Springfield; Mike Lawrence and the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute.