Grease city palm and move into unchecked house

Chicago zoning inspector arrested for taking bribes
September 22, 2009 7:57:08 PM PDT
Operation Crooked Code has nailed another City of Chicago zoning inspector. In a criminal complaint unsealed on Tuesday afternoon, zoning inspector Dominick Owens was charged with federal bribery. Authorities contend that Mr. Owens took more than $20,000 in bribes in exchange for residential certificates of occupancy for single-family homes and other new construction projects.

The government says in 2005 Owens started taking bribes from a permit expediter who was cooperating with the federal investigation. On July 20, 2006, he is accused of giving the expediter occupancy certificates for homes on West 37th Place and North Wolcott Street and then accepting $600 for the crooked permits.

Owens has been an inspector with the Chicago Department of Zoning for 14 years.

This is part of the ongoing federal investigation Operation Crooked Code. Thirteen other city inspectors have been charged in the case during the past 2 years.

Owens was released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to be back in court on October 7th. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.


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