Eugene Mullins, 49, of Chicago, a former Chicago police officer, and former Cook County Department of Public Affairs and Communications director between March 2008 and November 2010, was convicted today by a federal jury of three counts of wire fraud and four counts of accepting kickbacks. He was acquitted of one count of wire fraud and faces a 20 years prison sentence on each count of wire fraud and 10 years in prison on each count of accepting a kickback, with the maximum fine of $250,000 on each count.
Gary Render, Michael L. Peery, and Clifford Borner, all of Chicago, and Kenneth Gregory Demos, of Oak Park were the benefactors of four county contracts, each just under $25,000, from which they kicked back a portion to Mullins, who collected $34,700 from the deal. Each co-defendants were charged with a felony of concealing fraud and kickback scheme. Each of them entered into pretrial diversion agreements and were placed on probation, were ordered to pay full restitution to the county, and testified as government witnesses at Mullins’ trial.
Evidence at Mullins’ trial showed that between January 2010 and January 2011, he used his county position to submit and cause others to submit false documents to the county. He assisted the four co-defendants in obtaining professional and managerial service contracts and payment from the county and then solicited the individuals who obtained contracts for payments from the proceeds for his own benefit.
Evidence also showed that during 2010, Mullins schemed to fraudulently steer the following contracts: a $24,980 disaster grant contract to Render, who kick-backed $9,000 to Mullins; a $24,985 energy grant contract to Peery, who kick-backed $12,000; a $24,995 census contract to Borner, who kicked back $5,000; and a $24,997 census contract to Demos, who kicked back $8,700.
U.S. District Judge Amy St. Eve scheduled sentencing for December 19.