Updated 11/7/14 – 1:15 p.m.
CHICAGO (CBS) — A state lawmaker from the West Side avoided jail time Friday, when a federal judge sentenced him on misdemeanor tax evasion charges.
“I just want to say hallelujah, and praise the Lord for a system that we can now look to to say that it is possible for people to receive justice,” Rep. La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago) said after he was sentenced to probation and a fine for a single count of tax evasion. He had faced much more serious charges before arranging a plea deal with federal prosecutors.
Ford was re-elected Tuesday, after running unopposed in the 8th Representative District on the West Side.
Ford pleaded guilty earlier this year to a single misdemeanor count of filing a false tax return. In exchange, federal prosecutors dropped more than a dozen much more serious felony counts of bank fraud and other charges.