Ryan's Top Aide Gets 6 1/2-year Racketeering Sentence

Chicago, IL – Former Governor George Ryan's long-time top aide Scott Fawell was sentenced today to six-and-a-half years in prison for a racketeering scheme in which state employees and taxpayer dollars were used to fuel campaigns.

The 46-year-old Fawell's voice broke with emotion as he apologized to his politically prominent family before U-S District Judge Rebecca R. Pallmeyer imposed the sentence.

Fawell was convicted of racketeering and other offenses at a seven-week trial in March. It was the biggest case to date in the five-year federal investigation of corruption under Ryan.

Pallmeyer rejected a request from Fawell's defense for a break on grounds that what he did has been common in Illinois politics
for decades and no one told him he could be prosecuted for it.