Obama surfaces in Rezko trial

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Defense lawyer Joseph Duffy tells jurors about Rezko's work as an Obama fundraiser.

Asked if the defense planned to call Obama as a witness: "There's no intention to do that," Duffy said after court.
However, the defense does reserve the right to add witnesses to its list.

Later in the day, Obama's campaign responded: “It is well established that the trial is not about Sen. Obama, nor was there any suggestion to the contrary today,” said Bill Burton, an Obama campaign spokesman.

Obama’s name could surface again in the trial because of allegations that prosecutors have raised about Rezko routing a small chunk of a $250,000 illegally gained “finder’s fee” to Obama’s 2004 run for U.S. Senate.
Obama is not accused of wrongdoing .

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Does the name Governor John G. Rowland ring a bell?

I appreciate all your work to date as your paper is one of the few that has been on top of this issue. I recall Obama wrote letters which ultimately were for REZKO which got REZKO millions and then the land deal happened.Why arent they investigating Obama.looks like a kick back to me? I feel like I have been duped by Mr. no special interest yet this proves he did things for them and they for him.Is there any way to know if Obama is under investigation? If not he should be.

Obama's name has surfaced at the Rezko trial because of Rezko's work as a prominent fundraiser. The issues involving Obama's home purchase are not part of this trial.
There is some question about a couple of Rezko-linked donations, which the feds are calling "straw donations." They ended up in Obama's campaign fund in 2004 when he ran for U.S. Senate. Obama has since given to charity that money and other money tied to Rezko. I can say that Obama has not been accused of wrongdoing and there's nothing to suggest he is under federal scrutiny.

I am from Utah. The only real info I have gotten has been by doing a search for REZKO/Obama and more often than not your coverage is one of the few that appear. What on earth is wrong with all the TV and other papers? Quite frankly Obama can call it a boneheaded decision but alas a rose by any other name is still a rose. Keep up the good work.

Consider this. If Rezko was awarded money to refurbish Public housing and used part of it on the housing and another part of it on Obama's campaign. That would seem illegal to me; how about you?
Obama is no Virgin when it comes to taking illgotten money..or, so it seems.

In an article written by Christopher Wills of Associated Press, released March 10, 2008, Mr. Wills discussed the involvement of Rezko in the Obama house/vacant lot purchases. (Those familiar with this site know the basic story.)

Mr. Wills stated 'Obama later bought one-sixth of that [vacant] ot so that he would have a bigger side yard. Its value was appraised at $40,500, Obama says, but he paid one-sixth of what Rezko originally paid, or $104,500."

That paragraph raises an obvious, and crucial question. When Wills quotes Obama saying the lot was 'appraised" at $40,500, is he referring to an appraisal that appears on a government web site, or government form for real estate tax purposes, or is he referring to a genuine market value appraisal done by a real estate professional?

The reason the issue is crucial is this - if Obama paid $104,500 for a piece of land worth $40,500, solely because $104,500 represents 1/6th of what Rezko's wife paid for the property, then, first of all, it seems obvious that Rezko's wife paid much more than what the land was worth. What's more, she did so on the same day that Obama was getting a $300,000 reduction in the asking price for the adjoining house.

Why, then, would Obama later pay 1/6th of a price he knew to be inflated? To avoid the appearance of impropriety - a concept closely related to plausible deniability.

If Obama paid $104,500 for a piece of land that was really worth $40,500, the evidence of collusion and wrongdoing goes up even quicker than the price of the vacant land.

Obama Knew Rezko a long time, Knew what he was how he operated, so did most politicians in Chicago.

They new what they were doing, and choose to involve themselves anyhow.

The general public, that got the assistance of someone spending stolen, swindled money, would have to return it,to the courts, properties would be impounded, and probably faces charges.

Your trying to say, that since they were government officials they should be treated above the rest. Bull....... they Knew better, they should get harder sentences and lose all they gained from it.

Shame on anyone who would treat them any better than you or me.

The comment by Helen M.Alex is extremely important - it should be possible to establish this very easily by contacting any reputableestate agent. Sould attention also be paid to the fact that by all accounts the Rezkos did not have this kind of money available at the time but were dependent on one of Great Britain´s richest men Nahdmi Auchi. Auchi [a prohibited citizen in the US]is an Honorary Member of the International College of Surgeons in Chicago where of course Michelle Obama is the Vice-President for Comunity External Affairs

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Natasha Korecki

Natasha Korecki is the Federal Courts Reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times, covering federal news, corruption investigations and trials.

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on March 6, 2008 6:09 PM.

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