NATIONAL NEWS

Prosecutors rest case in Illinois utility corruption trial

Apr 12, 2023, 1:21 PM

CHICAGO (AP) — Prosecutors rested their side of the trial Wednesday against four people accused of seeking favors for Illinois’ largest electric utility by arranging $1.3 million in contracts and payments for associates of a powerful state politician.

Michael Madigan, the former House speaker, is not in court and faces his own separate trial. But he’s been a key part of the evidence presented over 17 days.

Longtime Madigan ally Ed Moody got more than $300,000 between 2012 and 2018 through ComEd’s contracts with various firms. He testified Tuesday that he believed the money was a reward for him to keep doing political work for the Chicago Democrat.

Moody denied doing much work for ComEd, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Defense attorneys tried to diminish Moody’s testimony by suggesting he was trying to please prosecutors and avoid being charged.

The four people on trial are former Madigan confidant Michael McClain, former ComEd CEO Anne Pramaggiore, former ComEd lobbyist John Hooker and former ComEd consultant Jay Doherty. All have pleaded not guilty to multiple charges, including bribery conspiracy.

Jurors heard a 2019 recorded phone call in which Pramaggiore suggested she wanted to end payments to Madigan’s allies but not until the end of the Legislature’s session.

“We do not want to get caught up in a, you know, disruptive battle where, you know, somebody gets their nose out of joint,” she said.

Pramaggiore said she plans to testify in her own defense.

Madigan was charged in 2022 with racketeering, bribery and other crimes. He’s denied wrongdoing. A year earlier, he resigned from the Legislature as the longest-serving House speaker in modern U.S. history amid speculation that he was a federal target.

The indictment accused Madigan, among other things, of reaping the benefits of private legal work illegally steered to his law firm.

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Prosecutors rest case in Illinois utility corruption trial