CHICAGO — A woman who was arrested while driving a car Chicago Ald. Proco “Joe” Moreno reported stolen earlier this year has filed a defamation suit against the outgoing alderman.
The suit comes a day after Cook County prosecutors charged Moreno, 47, with insurance fraud and obstruction of justice in the same incident.
Liliya Hrabar, 35, said Moreno voluntarily loaned her his 2016 Audi A6 in January — and she has text messages to prove it. The pair remained in contact for weeks, Hrabar said, and Moreno never asked about the car.
Prosecutors allege Moreno falsely reported the car stolen the day he loaned it to Hrabar. She was pulled over by Chicago police officers while driving the vehicle Feb. 4. Hrabar spent a night in jail. Charges were later dropped.
Now, the insurance agent from Ukraine says she wants Moreno to take responsibility for what happened. Hrabar said her reputation has been damaged and she has lost clients.
Hrabar said Moreno never told her why he reported the car stolen. She alleged Moreno asked her to keep quiet about the incident until after his Feb. 26 bid for reelection, which he lost.
“He’s like, ‘Let me go through election. I will explain everything to you. I will fix everything,'” Hrabar said.
“I talked to him after that,” she added, “and I still don’t understand why he did that. When we met, he was so sweet and so nice.”
An attorney for Moreno did not respond to requests for comment Thursday.