Nephew of former Mayor Richard M. Daley found guilty of tax fraud
CHICAGO (WLS) -- Former Chicago Alderman Patrick Daley Thompson was sentenced to four months in prison in federal court Wednesday.
Daley Thompson, was convicted in February on seven counts of lying to federal bank regulators and filing false tax returns.
Thompson arrived for court in the morning knowing his freedom was on the line, but he seemed stunned in court by the judge's decision. Prosecutors had requested a two year prison sentence while the defense asked for probation.
"What's happened here is a great miscarriage of justice brought on by zealous prosecution," said Thompson's attorney Chris Gair.
Now, Thompson is hoping to start his sentence next month so he can be home for Christmas.
Thompson's attorney argued that in 74% of other tax fraud cases in this district the defendants were given probation.
"It is the smallest tax loss case brought in this district in the last ten years and it is an absolute unfair, unjust prosecution," Gair said.
Thompson, a former Alderman and grandson and nephew of the Daley mayoral dynasty, pleaded for leniency so he could stay with his family.
He told the judge: "I believe my conduct was not criminal," adding, "My conscience remains clear."
Thompson did admit, "I've made mistakes and those mistakes have cost me dearly."
But prosecutor Michelle Peterson argued that when Thompson was confronted about a bank loan and fraudulent mortgage deductions claimed on his taxes, he lied and lied until he got caught.
She said his conduct was, "rational, calculated and premeditated."
"When people are caught for those crimes there has to be a punishment to act as a deterrent to others," she added.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who is also a former federal prosecutor, said this following Thompson's sentencing.
"I honestly don't know all the facts involved in the case. Obviously, he was convicted by a jury of his peers and we have to honor the decision of the of the jury," the mayor said. "But look, what I also hope doesn't get lost in the shuffle is this is a human being with a wife and children and a family who loves him, and for whatever mistakes he's made, obviously, he's paying a pretty severe price. But I don't want to lose sight of the fact that he's a human being who clearly made some mistakes, the jury found as such, and he's going to pay and already has paid a pretty substantial price."
Thompson did not answer any questions as he left the courthouse but had one parting comment to ABC7.
"In time enough, we'll talk," Thompson said.
The judge agreed to recommend that Thompson serve his four month sentence at the federal prison camp in either Oxford, Wisconsin or Terre Haute, Indiana. He has to report by August 22, which will allow him to be home by Christmas.
After his conviction, Daley Thompson was forced to resign as alderman of the 11th Ward. Mayor Lori Lightfoot appointed Nicole Lee to represent the 11th Ward in City Council.