Friday, May 29, 2015

Old sex scandal behind Hastert payoffs

Farm in Hastert's old district
Here's a scandal involving former House Speaker Denny Hastert that almost no one saw coming.

From the Los Angeles Times:
On Friday, federal law enforcement officials said Hastert had paid $1.7 million over the last four years to conceal sexual abuse against a former male student he knew during his days as a teacher in Yorkville, Ill., where Hastert worked until 1981.

A top federal law enforcement official, who would not be identified speaking about the ongoing federal case, said investigators also spoke with a second man who raised similar allegations that corroborated what the former student said. The second person was not being paid by Hastert, the official said.

The disclosures followed Thursday's federal indictment against Hastert on charges of lying to the FBI about the reasons for large cash withdrawals he is accused of making to buy the man's silence.

"It goes back a long way, back to then," a second official said. "It has nothing to do with public corruption or a corruption scandal. Or to his time in office."
I've only been to Yorkville once--it in the early 1980s before Hastert was elected to Congress and the village was untouched by the Chicago sprawl. Only about 5,000 people lived there then--it was one of those towns where everyone knew everyone. Things will continue to get worse for the former state champion wrestling coach.

Ironically, Hastert became speaker after a sex scandal derailed Bob Livingston of Louisiana after the resignation of Newt Gingrich.

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