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Suit lays bare tensions in McMahon family

Daniel T. Frawley 1988.

Daniel T. Frawley in 1988.

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Daniel T. Frawley has wound up in some bizarre situations.

There was the time, seven years ago, when he and since-convicted political fixer Tony Rezko made a deal with the Iraqi government to train power-plant guards. Only they needed to find a place for a training school. They asked then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama and then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich for help, hoping to put the school in western Illinois. Blagojevich was interested, but the plan went nowhere.

Then, six years ago, Frawley’s sister, Maureen Frawley, told the police that three guns and $100,000 in cash had been stolen from the home they shared in La Grange. Four days later, somebody left the guns and money on their porch.

Now, Frawley’s cousin Theresa McMahon Seibert is accusing him of trying to find a hit man 10 years ago to kill her husband, Brett Seibert, who was partners in a construction business with Frawley. The allegation is contained in an affidavit the would-be hit man signed that has been given to the federal judge who is set to sentence Frawley next month for a $4.4 million bank fraud.

While awaiting sentencing, Frawley, 60, of Westchester, filed a “whistleblower” lawsuit in federal court last July. In it, he accuses seven members of his politically connected family of government-contract fraud. He says they fraudulently obtained millions of dollars in contracts from the city of Chicago, Chicago Public Schools and other governments by falsely claiming their businesses were owned and operated by women or minorities, though white men actually ran the companies.

Frawley’s allegations in one instance mirror the findings of Joseph Ferguson, the city of Chicago’s inspector general, who is urging Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration to ban Windy City Electric Co. — one of the businesses named in Frawley’s lawsuit — from getting any city work.

Frawley is suing:

McMahon Food Corp., the Little Village company that delivers the milk that kids get at Chicago’s schools, under a $20 million-a-year contract; its president, Bridget McMahon Healy, and its secretary, Frank J. McMahon, who is Bridget McMahon Healy’s father and Frawley’s first cousin.

C&C Dairy Inc., of Markham, and its president, Christine Stajsz­czak, and Krystal Dairy, of Homewood, and its president, Mary Hrascinski. Both companies work with McMahon on the Chicago school-milk contract.

Windy City Electric, of Chicago; its owners, Nancy McMahon and her sister-in-law Kathleen McMahon, and their husbands, John K. McMahon and Anthony P. McMahon, who are Frawley’s first cousins.

Plumbing Systems Inc., of Chicago; its owners, John and Anthony McMahon, and their business associate, Daniel T. Hebert.

Brett Seibert, who was once partners with Frawley in a construction business.

Frawley’s lawsuit is filed under seal for the Justice Department to review the allegations, but the Chicago Sun-Times has reviewed a copy of the suit.

If the lawsuit is successful, Frawley could share in any money the government collects.

The McMahons deny any wrongdoing.

“Frawley has misled and lied to many people and hurt many more,” say Frank McMahon’s lawyers, Thomas S. Breen and Todd S. Pugh. “If ever given the opportunity to know the specifics of Frawley’s false allegations, Frank McMahon and his family will proceed with the appropriate legal action.”

Frawley — who was a Chicago cop for seven months in 1977 — has been cooperating with federal prosecutors for at least the past six years, according to a legal-malpractice lawsuit that he has filed against his former lawyer. In a deposition, Frawley talked about how he secretly recorded Rezko, who was found guilty in 2008 of having used his clout with the Blagojevich administration in a scheme to enrich himself and business associates.

Records show Frawley owes $521,845 in back taxes to the IRS and Illinois Department of Revenue, mostly for delinquent income taxes.

Frawley and his lawyers declined to comment for this story.

He originally was to have been sentenced last year. At the time, prosecutors said they would ask for a reduced prison sentence — a year and a half rather than the 35 years Frawley could face — because of his cooperation.

His cousin is urging U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman not to go easy on Frawley. Theresa McMahon Seibert wants her cousin sent away for “a very long time,” according to more than 100 pages of documents she has submitted to the judge.

“My husband willingly cooperated with the FBI and testified before a grand jury about Daniel,” she wrote. “For responding and testifying before the grand jury, Daniel decided the appropriate punishment should be death by paid assassin. And the government is recommending that Daniel gets 18 months . . . ?”

She claims that Frawley and his sister, Maureen Frawley, demanded $5 million from her brothers Frank, Anthony and John McMahon — the same three men named in Frawley’s whistleblower case — when Frawley’s sister met with a mutual cousin, lawyer and DuPage County Board member Michael McMahon, at his Oakbrook Terrace law office in 2009.

Those documents include a copy of an affidavit Michael McMahon obtained from a man who claims he was solicited by Frawley in 2002 to kill Seibert’s husband.

“I have absolutely no comment on the Dan Frawley issue,” says Michael McMahon, who is not seeking re-election. “It’s not in my best interest.”

Contributing: Andrew Schroedter, Better Government Association



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