Feds subpoenaed Illinois Senate President Don Harmon’s office for docs on Chinatown property

Federal authorities demanded any documents related to a parcel of land in Chinatown that has become a key part of a wide-ranging public corruption investigation.

SHARE Feds subpoenaed Illinois Senate President Don Harmon’s office for docs on Chinatown property
Illinois Senate President Don Harmon, pictured in March.

Illinois Senate President Don Harmon, pictured in March.

Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times

Federal authorities subpoenaed Illinois Senate President Don Harmon’s office earlier this summer as part of the expansive public corruption probe that has roiled the highest levels of city and state politics.

Chicago U.S. Attorney John Lausch’s office demanded Harmon turn over any documents related to a parcel of land at Cermak Road and Wentworth Avenue. That state-owned property was one topic of a conversation secretly recorded by the FBI in 2014 involving Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, former 25th Ward Ald. Danny Solis and two Chinatown businessmen.

One of those businessmen has since been charged with fraud, while Solis was revealed to have worn a wire for the feds.

And Madigan’s office was subpoenaed for records related to the Chinatown property — among other things — when federal prosecutors implicated the speaker in an alleged ComEd bribery scheme July 17, the same day Harmon’s subpoena was served.

According to the document obtained Saturday by the Chicago Sun-Times, the feds also told Harmon to turn over any communications related to the property involving Madigan, the speaker’s close confidant Michael McClain, lobbyist Nancy Kimme or disgraced ex-state Sen. Martin Sandoval, who has since pleaded guilty to a bribery charge.

When the feds raided Sandoval’s offices last year, they sought records related to the law firm where Harmon used to work. The Oak Park Democrat stepped down from that firm after succeeding John Cullerton as Senate president in January.

Harmon, who has not been accused of any wrongdoing, has said Sandoval had a habit of keeping files on political opponents.

“Clearly there is an ongoing federal investigation related to Marty Sandoval’s legislative activities,” Harmon spokesman John Patterson said. “Our office has complied with requests for information.”

The Latest
During a challenging time, she asked for space but he tried to brainstorm solutions instead.
Two measures to further protect transgender people are awaiting Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s signature. But advocates say there’s more the state can do to help the LGBTQ+ community, including a push to require school districts to teach sex education and other calls to help support youth and seniors.
While the Sway Bar faced no noticeable consequences from Mayor Nick Caiafa, who doubles as the northwest suburb’s liquor commissioner, he insists he’s not going easy on the business.
Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnisovas promised changes were coming this offseason, and the first domino fell on Thursday, sending the defensive standout in Caruso to the Thunder for a promising play-making guard in Giddey.