Almost 13 months after checking in to a federal prison in Minnesota, former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has returned to Chicago under supervision to complete the remaining month of his sentence for breaking banking laws to hide his sexual abuse of teenage boys.
He then broke banking laws by offering the victims hush money. The Illinois Republican admitted to sexually abusing underage boys while he worked as a high school teacher and coach.
The former Speaker admitted to the judge at his April 2016 sentencing hearing that he had sexually abused children in 1970s during his time as a wrestling coach at Yorkville High School in IL.
The statute of limitations in those cases had expired by the time authorities uncovered the abuse. Records list his release date as August 16.
Hastert is now being supervised by a residential re-entry management field office based in Chicago, after serving 13 months of his 15-month sentence.
The feds hit Hastert in May 2015 with a blockbuster indictment that accused him of illegally structuring bank withdrawals and lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
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He was handed 15 months in federal prison for breaking banking laws in the cover-up, a sentence he was serving at a medical prison facility in Rochester, Minnesota, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons. He has repeatedly declined comment, but his wife acknowledged her husband is a victim.
Scott Cross, who testified at Hastert's sentencing hearing that Hastert abused him as a teen, said Tuesday that he didn't ask to be notified of Hastert's release from prison and remains intent on moving on with his life. "I'm not going to look back on it".
At the time, Hastert said he was "deeply ashamed" and said, "I know why I am here".
"They got him on what they could", he said.
The withdrawals Hastert made while paying Individual A prompted questions from bank officials, but Hastert lied and claimed he was using the money to buy stocks and antique cars. Tribune reporters spent several months contacting scores of former wrestlers and students, filing two dozen open-records requests in an effort to undercover the truth.
The former speaker served 20 years in Congress and eight years as the highest-ranking member of the House before retiring in 2007.