Judge tacks 2 1/2 years to ex-Alderman Medrano`s sentence - KMSP-TV

Judge tacks 2 1/2 years to ex-Alderman Medrano`s sentence

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

A federal judge tacked another 2 1/2 years on top of disgraced former Chicago Ald. Ambrosio Medrano's prison sentence Monday afternoon, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting.

Just four days after he was handed a 10 1/2 year prison term for his role in a Cook County contracting kickback scheme, Medrano Monday was handed an additional 30 months for a similar scheme targeting Los Angeles County.

U.S. District Judge John Tharp said Medrano, 60, would get "no free pass for public corruption" as he dished out the extra time.

The three-times convicted Medrano — who previously served federal time in the 1990s for taking bribes while he sat on Chicago's City Council — had hoped Tharp would spare him additional time by ordering the new sentence to run concurrently with the 10 1/2 year term. But Tharp said he'd only start serving the new sentence once he's completed the one he got next week.

He was convicted of the Los Angeles County scam at a jury trial last June, after FBI informant Michael DiFoggio helped set him up.

Secretly recorded videos played during the trial showed Medrano and codefendants Gus Buenrostro and Jim Barta plotting to pay a $10,000 bribe to an L.A. County official to fix a contract for Barta's business.

At one point Medrano was shown suggesting the plotters seal the deal by cutting their fingers in a Mafia-style blood oath, while in another he suggested disguising the bribe as a "golf outing" ticket. "That's what's popular in Chicago," he told an undercover FBI agent.

Medrano, who once boasted that he wanted to be a "pig" who feasted on government contracts, is the only former Chicago alderman to be convicted of corruption offenses more than once.

U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman on Thursday told Medrano he'd followed the city's unofficial corrupt motto, "Where's mine?" when he carried out his official duties as an alderman in the 1990s, then, following his release from prison, an aide to disgraced former Cook County Commissioner Joseph Marion Moreno.

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