Judicial Watch • Ex-Legislator in Milwaukee Takes Plea Agreement

Ex-Legislator in Milwaukee Takes Plea Agreement

Ex-Legislator in Milwaukee Takes Plea Agreement

OCTOBER 05, 2005

According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, former state Senator Brian Burke could face jail time and stiff penalties for crimes he committed while in office:

The Milwaukee Democrat is charged with 13 felonies and five misdemeanors that accuse him of claiming $88 daily expense reimbursements on days he wasn’t in Madison, destroying evidence, directing employees to campaign on state time and illegally soliciting donations in the Capitol.

On Wednesday, more than three years after he was charged, Burke will plead guilty or no contest to at least one felony and one misdemeanor, according to two sources who have been told the terms of the deal.

According to one source briefed on the arrangement, Burke would forfeit about $60,000 to cover the hours his aides spent campaigning on state time. Blanchard will argue that Burke, 47, should spend at least six months in jail, the source said.

If found guilty on all counts, Burke would face a maximum penalty of 215 years in prison and more than $750,000 in fines.

Though Burke faces serious charges and serious consequences that could also cost him his law license, it seems as though he would more than likely be able to hold on to his lobbying license. With Burke’s apparent disregard for the law and ethics, we can only hope that he won’t be tempted in any future interactions with his former colleagues.

The article also mentions several other recent, unrelated political scandals involving kickbacks, illegal gifts, and backroom deals.

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