Ex-Ald. Ed Vrdolyak pleads guilty to tax evasion charges

CHICAGO (WLS) -- At 81 years old, he is no longer Ed 'Fast Eddie' Vrdolyak, the consummate backroom Chicago politician and former alderman who was a central figure in the council wars of the 1980s.

Now, Vrdolyak is a two-time convicted felon after pleading guilty to tax evasion charges Thursday morning.

The feds said Vrydolyak had a secret deal to reap millions from the state's multi-billion dollar tobacco settlement starting in 1998. They said he helped another attorney evade taxes on the income for nearly two decades.

"This is a relatively simple tax case. That's all it's about. Nothing else," defense attorney Mike Monico said.

Vrdolyak is a retired attorney who said he now just does odd and ends around the law practice that bears his name. Vrdolyak was also sentenced to 10 months after a conviction for mail and wire fraud in 2009.

"We're happy it's over. Mr. Vrdolyak, who is 81, looks forward to getting the case resolved," Monico said.

Vrdolyak faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, but prosecutors said they plan to ask for a sentence of 24 to 30 months when he is sentenced in July.
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