The Latest: Schock spokesman: Filings "speak for themselves"
Posted April 19
CHICAGO — The Latest on developments in the corruption case against former Rep. Aaron Schock (all times local):
A spokesman for Aaron Schock's legal team says it'll let its recent filings speak for themselves and won't comment on a new government court document that defends the use of a confidential informant employed by the former U.S. representative.
Mark Hubbard on Wednesday declined direct comment on the new government filing. He said only that lawyers "feel the motions we filed before the court speak for themselves."
In a filing last month, Schock's lawyers said investigators overstepped legal lines by recruiting a confidential informant from staff and pressing him to secretly record co-workers.
Schock's attorneys accused the FBI of using the informant to sidestep restrictions on what a federal agent can search and seize. They said they'd soon move to dismiss the case.
A 2016 indictment charges Schock with mail fraud, theft of government funds and other crimes.
Prosecutors have raised the prospect that former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock tried to a get a grand jury witness to change testimony months before the Illinois Republican was indicted on public corruption allegations.
A government filing late Tuesday disclosed that an unnamed witness told prosecutors in January 2016 that Schock was in touch. The witness believed Schock wanted to talk about the grand jury investigation.
The filing says the witness agreed to record a conversation with Schock. Prosecutors say Schock "wanted to discuss and attempted to suggest an inaccurate account of one of the specific matters ... charged in the indictment." It didn't elaborate. The filing says the recording could be play at Schock's July trial.
Schock's attorney wasn't immediately available for comment Wednesday.
A focus of the government's is an informant's role in the investigation.
Federal prosecutors deny that investigators crossed legal lines in their use of a confidential informant from former Republican Rep. Aaron Schock's staff to build a corruption case against him.
The former Illinois congressman's attorneys recently filed court motions accusing federal agents of violating Schock's constitutional right against unreasonable search and seizure, including by having the government's informant secretly record other staffers.
In a response filed late Tuesday in a federal court in Springfield, prosecutors contend that Schock is trying to "manufacture claims of governmental misconduct" to avoid prosecution. They say agents spelled out to the informant what he or she legally could and couldn't do, including prohibiting the informant from initiating discussions about legislative matters.
Schock's lawyers have asked for more information about the government's handling of the informant.
A 2016 indictment charges Schock with mail fraud, theft of government funds and other crimes, including as he spent lavishly on travel and sports events.
Federal prosecutors say former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock shouldn't get more information about a confidential informant in his corruption case.
The prosecutors made the argument in a 60-page motion filed late Tuesday. The (Peoria) Journal Star reports (http://bit.ly/2oLBZ3l ) that prosecutors also say the Peoria Republican shouldn't receive any additional material from the grand jury that investigated him. Schock was indicted in 2016 after resigning from Congress.
In the filing, prosecutors accuse Schock of trying to avoid trial by engaging "in an increasingly aggressive search for some governmental misconduct claim."
Schock's attorneys last month said in filings that someone who worked for Schock secretly provided the government with information, including illegally recorded conversations with fellow staffers. They asked the judge to force prosecutors to provide more information about the informant.