Opening statements underway in Beavers tax evasion trial

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Attorneys have begun presenting their opening statements in the tax evasion trial of Cook County Commissioner William Beavers.

Prosecutors are laying the groundwork for the government case that there was no way possible that Beavers’ allegedly illegal use of campaign funds was an oversight, as he has claimed.

Prosecutors made the point that Beavers was first elected to public office in 1983 as a Chicago Alderman.  Prosecutors say he was abundantly familiar with the law when it comes to personal use of campaign funds.

As the only person authorized to write checks on three different campaign funds, Beavers allegedly wrote numerous checks to himself in small increments — $2,000 here, a check for $3,000 there — from 2006 to 2008.  Over that 3-year period, the government says Beavers failed to report these checks totaling $125,000 as taxable income, as required by the Internal Revenue Service.

Prosecutors also allege that as a Cook County Commissioner, Beavers allegedly deposited monthly $1,200 expense reimbursement checks from the county into his own personal account.

Beavers has a formidable defense team in attorneys Sam Adam Sr. and Jr., along with Victor Henderson.  The team said that he immediately repaid his campaign funds and amended his taxes upon realizing that he had made a mistake.

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