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Feds Indict Former City Comptroller For Ohio Money Laundering Plot

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – A former Chicago city comptroller and former Ohio state deputy treasurer accused in a bribery and money laundering scheme will plead not guilty, his attorney said Friday.

A federal grand jury in Columbus on Thursday indicted Amer Ahmad, who served as then-Treasurer Kevin Boyce’s top deputy.

Ahmad’s attorney, W. Kelly Johnson, said his client will plead not guilty Monday and noted that the indictment does not allege any financial loss to Ohio’s treasury.

Ahmad resigned last month as Chicago’s comptroller. He is charged with money laundering, wire fraud, conspiracy, bribery and making false statements.

Prosecutors allege that between 2009 and 2011, Ahmad, bank lobbyist Mohammed Noure Alo, financial adviser Douglas E. Hampton and mortgage broker Joseph M. Chiavaroli conspired to use Ahmad’s position to enrich themselves and their businesses by securing lucrative state business.

Ahmad would funnel official broker services business from the state to Hampton in return for payments, according to the indictment. Ahmad and Chiavaroli were accused of disguising those payments by passing them through a landscaping business in which they owned a stake.

Prosecutors say Hampton received more than $3 million in commissions for hundreds of trades conducted on behalf of the treasurer’s office. They say the other three men got more than $500,000 from Hampton.

Prosecutors said Chiavaroli pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiracy to commit money laundering and Hampton pleaded guilty to conspiracy on Wednesday.

Ahmad’s relationship to Alo figured heavily in the 2010 state treasurer’s race, which Democrat Boyce lost to Republican Josh Mandel.

A Mandel ad and Ohio Republican Party mailers emphasized Alo’s first name, Mohammed, suggesting he and Boyce attended the same mosque. Boyce is Christian, Alo and Ahmad are Muslim and Mandel is Jewish.

Mandel spokesman Seth Unger said in a statement that the allegations against Ahmad cause concern and that “we hope that he and the others involved are brought to justice.”

Boyce was appointed to an Ohio House seat in 2012.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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