Rezko trial: Defense questions Levine's cash spending

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A few weeks before Christmas every year, Stuart Levine drove around town passing out envelopes stuffed with cash to drivers, doormen, secretaries, valets and any one else who gave him good service during the year, he said.

It totaled $50,000 in Christmas gifts, Levine said.

Tony Rezko lawyer Joseph Duffy doesn't believe him.
"$50,000 in cash, every year, to people who gave you good service?" Duffy asked sarcastically.
“Yes, sir,” Levine answered enthusiastically.

Levine said he also gave about $100,000 a year in cash help to his "drug friends."
"Those were gifts all in cash?" Duffy asked.
"Yes, sir," Levine said.
"That helps explain where these huge sums of cash would go?" Duffy asked.
"That would be some of the explanation," Levine answered.

To counter those claims, Duffy showed a handful of checks written in December to Levine's secretary and other office personnel, as well as a $3,300 check to one of Levine's drug friends.

Duffy is trying to tell the jury that Levine is hiding the extent of his drug use from jurors. On Monday, Levine admitted to writing $1 million worth of checks to cash between 2000 and 2004. Levine said just $20,000 a year was spent on drugs. Duffy repeatedly quarreled with that contention.

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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.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on April 8, 2008 10:36 AM.

Rezko trial: Levine talks about day in November was the previous entry in this blog.

Rezko trial: Levine's memory clears up is the next entry in this blog.

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