Dennis Hastert to plead guilty

Former Republican Congressman and House Speaker Dennis Hastert to plead guilty to charges related to hush money paid to quiet allegations of sexual misconduct that took place decades ago.

Prosecutors may still seek jail-time for Hastert. Hastert served as Speaker of the House for nine years until 2007.

Hastert is facing one count of breaking banking laws and one count of lying to the FBI about paying $3.5 million dollars to an unknown individual to hide unspecified past misconduct. Each charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

John Gallo, Hastert’s attorney said that a plea agreement should be finalized by Monday. Such an agreement would mean that the prosecutor will more likely be lenient on Hastert, and his secrets will not be aired out in a courtroom.

It is speculated that the alleged impropriety stems from his time as a high-school teacher and wrestling coach at Yorkville High School in Yorkville, IL during the 1960s and 70s.

Reuters reports that according to anonymous law-enforcement sources Hastert was paying to cover-up the abuse of a male student.

A plea deal however, would mean that this hypothetical person, who will be referred to as “Individual A” in the plea, will not testify and the story of abuse will not be heard in court.

 

[Reuters] [CBC]