FBI charges 6 in Harvey in corruption probe

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HARVEY, Ill. — Six people have been charged in ongoing federal corruption schemes in south suburban Harvey.

Among those charged are three relatives of high-ranking Harvey government officials who allegedly extorted cash from a strip club owner, and two Harvey police officers who allegedly falsified a police report to protect acquaintances from facing firearm charges.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago announced the following charges Wednesday:

Rommell Kellogg, 66, and Corey Johnson, 63, both of Harvey, are charged with conspiracy to commit extortion.  Kellogg is the brother of Harvey Mayor Eric Kellogg.  Johnson is Mayor Kellogg’s cousin.  From 2012 to 2016, Kellogg and Johnson conspired to regularly extort payments from a Harvey strip club owner based on threats that the city would shut down the business if the payments were not made, according to the criminal complaint.

The charges allege that in exchange for the payments, city officials allowed the business to operate, knowing that acts of prostitution were occurring onsite.

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Derrick Muhammad, 70, of South Holland, and Derrick Moore, 48, of Blue Island, are charged with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to obstruct justice. Muhammad is also a brother of Mayor Kellogg.  They allegedly worked together to falsify a police report to protect two acquaintances from possibly facing firearm charges.  The acquaintances were a father and son who are convicted felons and could not legally possess a firearm, the complaint states. Both officers have been placed on administrative leave.

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Donald Luster, 55, of Dixmoor, and Will Wiley, 56, of Harvey, are charged with conspiracy to commit federal program bribery.  Luster worked as a private consultant to the city of Harvey, and in November 2017, Luster and Wiley agreed to solicit bribe payments from an entrepreneur who owned a towing company in a nearby suburb, the complaint states. In exchange for the bribes, Luster would provide the entrepreneur with a lease to a parcel of land owned by Harvey, the complaint states.  Luster is a former mayor of suburban Dixmoor who was working as a private consultant with Harvey.

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Earlier Wednesday, the Mayor Kellogg confirmed that federal agents visited the Harvey Police Department Wednesday morning.  He said he instructed the police chief to cooperate fully with investigators and given the apparent ongoing investigation, he said he will not have any further comment.

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