Beavers loses bid to delay sentence, must report to prison Monday
BY KIM JANSSEN Federal Courts Reporter November 26, 2013 1:02PM
Updated: December 28, 2013 6:23AM
Former Cook County Commissioner William Beavers must report to federal prison on Monday, a judge has ruled, rejecting Beavers plea to delay his six-month tax fraud sentence while his appeal is heard.
Beavers, 78, was convicted in March of cheating on his taxes for failing to declare how he’d used his political campaign fund to bankroll heavy gambling losses.
His lawyers wanted U.S. District Judge James Zagel to delay his reporting date while his appeal is heard, but Zagel — who handed Beavers the six-month sentence in September — on Tuesday ruled that the appeal does not raise “a substantial question of law” nor is it likely to result in success.
Beavers still has the opportunity to ask the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to extend his bond while the appeal is considered, Zagel noted in the ruling.
Beavers, who famously once described himself as “the hog with the big nuts,” used his political campaign accounts from 2006 until 2008 as a slush fund to swell his pension and to cover gambling sprees at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Ind., then failed to pay taxes on those withdrawals, a jury found earlier this year.
The sharp-suited, baritone-voiced former alderman and Chicago cop claimed he’d merely loaned himself the money, and filed an appeal arguing Zagel had improperly barred testimony from an “expert” accountant Beavers hired in his defense.
Beavers’ attorneys also argued that the appeal is likely to take longer than the six-month sentence, meaning Beavers could have served his time before a decision is made.