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FBI Boss: Public Corruption Unit ‘Gonna Be Busy For A While’

FBI Special Agent-In-Charge Robert Holley took command of the Chicago office in late 2013. (Credit: FBI)

FBI Special Agent-In-Charge Robert Holley took command of the Chicago office in late 2013. (Credit: FBI)

dellimore250 Craig Dellimore
Craig Dellimore, political editor for WBBM, joined the station in 1983...
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CHICAGO (CBS) – Despite so many high-profile arrests and convictions in political corruption cases in Chicago, the head of the local FBI office said there are still plenty of active investigations running.

WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports, after two previous tours in the Chicago office, Special Agent-In-Charge Robert Holley said he knew about corruption in Chicago and Cook County, but when he took over the office last year, he was surprised by the extent of it.

“When I first got here, I got my briefs from the different program managers, and when I got my brief from public corruption, you know, I said ‘You’ve got to be kidding me,’” he said. “I have a good portion of my field office working public corruption matters.”

Chicago's History Of Corruption Convictions Hasn't Deterred Others

fbi FBI Boss: Public Corruption Unit Gonna Be Busy For A While
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Holley couldn’t provide details, but said the FBI’s Chicago office has several active public corruption investigations underway.

“I will tell you, the people that I got working that have a lot of experience in these matters,” he said. “They are extremely busy. They’re extremely good at what they do, and I think those guys are gonna be busy for a while.”

With four governors and dozens of aldermen, state lawmakers, county commissioners, and other elected officials – not to mention businessmen and political powerbrokers tied to their schemes – ending up behind bars for corruption, why aren’t others deterred from committing fraud, bribery, and extortion?

“Very good question. I wish I had a good answer for it, other than they’re greedy. … They think they’re smarter than the next guy, and they’re going to get away with it, and they’re greedy,” Holley said. “I think it’s just greed, and they think that they can’t get caught. And I’m here to tell you, based on what I’ve seen, they’re going to get caught.”

Holley is the guest on this week’s edition of “At Issue,” airing Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m.