Blagojevich fundraiser to be sentenced; Feds could send Raghuveer Nayak away for seven years

On Monday the city of Chicago will agree to multi-million dollar settlements in two more claims against city.
January 11, 2014 5:35:28 AM PST
Prosecutors want a seven year prison term for the wealthy suburban businessman who tried to broker Governor Rod Blagojevich's illegal plot to sell Barack Obama's senate seat.

DOCUMENT: Raghuveer Nayak sentencing position paper

This was the deal Blagojevich saw as "effin golden," to use his language. The senate seat was vacated by President Obama. Blagojevich fundraiser Raghuveer Nayak pledged a million dollars to the governor in exchange for Congressman Jesse Jackson junior going to the senate.

Nayak was never charged with that, but when he's sentenced this month in an unrelated bribery case, the I-Team learned, federal prosecutors will use the Blagojevich-Jackson cabal against him.

They shared the same campaign stage and ran in the same political circles, Governor Rod Blagojevich and wealthy Oakbrook businessman Nayak.

We now know they were peas in the same pod.

For years Nayak was paying bribes in the operations of his medical clinics and Blagojevich was selling state government positions in lucrative pay-to-play schemes.

So when the men's destiny crossed, it was a perfect fit. The result was a sinister plot to fill the Senate vacancy left by Barack Obama.

According to this government memo prepared for Nayak's scheduled sentencing this month, Nayak paid $3.2 million in bribes to doctors who referred patients to his surgery center scheme spanned almost a decade. Prosecutors say that practice stopped abruptly when Blagojevich was arrested in December 2008.

Nayak wants 18 months in prison after pleading guilty in the medical bribery scheme. But he could go to prison for more than seven years under the government's recommendation.

Even though Nayak was never charged with the Blagojevich plot, part of the prosecutors sentencing argument is that Nayak pledged to raise $1 million for Blagojevich.

If Blagojevich appointed Jackson to the senate, corrupting the political process.

Nayak's attorneys filed a motion Friday asking for more time before sentencing, so the January 22 date could be postponed. They would not comment on prosecutors asking for more than seven years behind bars.

The government memo describes in detail how Nayak tried to set up the Jackson appointment, through Governor Blagojevich's brother Robert, who was prosecuted in the original case those charges later dropped after the jury deadlocked on all but one count.