Antoin "Tony" Rezko
Updated: December 24, 2011 8:20AM
◆ Fall 2003-early 2004: Tony Rezko and Stuart Levine scheme to split a kickback off a $50 million state pension deal.
◆ Early May 2004: Rezko used his influence to reappoint Levine to state pension board. Around this time, Rezko served as a fund-raiser on Barack Obama’s Senate campaign finance committee.
◆ May 2004: FBI visits Stuart Levine at home after hearing criminal activity over a wiretap since April.
◆ June 2004: Sun-Times breaks story involving a shakedown scheme tied to the proposed Edward Hospital and a federal probe into Mercy Crystal Lake Hospital. The Mercy deal is later part of Rezko’s indictment.
◆ Jan 2005: Sun-Times reports on a spat between Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his father-in-law, the powerful Ald. Dick Mell (33rd). Mell triggers a probe after charging in a Sun-Times story that Chris Kelly “trades appointments to commissions for checks for $50,000” to the governor’s political fund.
◆ March 2005: Blagojevich brags about his “testicular virility” in Mell battle and invites a probe into his administration, saying it is: “Clean as a hound’s tooth.”
◆ May 2005: Levine indicted in connection with state hospital board business. Feds make clear this is just the beginning.
◆ June 2005: In a controversial purchase, Rezko’s wife, Rita, buys vacant lot same day Sen. Barack Obama buys abutting $1.65 million home.
◆ Aug 2005: Levine indicted on Teachers Retirement System board charges.
◆ Early 2006: Levine secretly cooperates, wears wire.
◆ Sept. 2006: Rezko indicted in two separate cases while overseas.
◆ Sept. 2006: Levine pleads guilty to litany of crimes, working out a 67-month deal. The plea document exposes a dirty underworld involving a Who’s Who of Illinois political players.
◆ Dec. 2007: Blagojevich aide Chris Kelly indicted on tax charges related to personal gambling debts.
◆ March 2008: Rezko trial begins.
◆ June 2008: Jury convicts Rezko.
◆ Summer 2008: Rezko begins cooperating with federal authorities.
◆ Nov. 2008: Obama elected president.
◆ Sept. 2009: Kelly commits suicide.
◆ Aug. 2010: Blagojevich convicted of lying to FBI but jury deadlocks on all other counts.
◆ June 27: In retrial, Blagojevich convicted on 17 counts.
◆ Tuesday: Rezko sentenced to 10 1/2 years in prison.
◆ Dec. 6: Blagojevich set to be sentenced.