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April 14, 2024

Former Sen. Sam McCann Pleads GUILTY To All Counts In Federal Court –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On February 15, 2024

Illinois (ECWd) –

On the third day of trial, and after two Exhibits (1 and 2) were entered and displayed, Sam McCann informed the Court that he would like to change his plea to Guilty on all Counts.

From the Docket:

Minute Entry for proceedings held before Judge Colleen R. Lawless: BENCH TRIAL completed on 2/15/2024. AUSA Timothy Bass present on behalf of the Government. Attorney of record Jason Vincent present with Defendant, William Samuel McCann Jr. Continued testimony of previously sworn witness. Evidence entered and displayed. Parties advised the Court that the Defendant wishes to change his plea to guilty on all Counts. Defendant confirms to the Court that he would like to change his plea to guilty. Hearing adjourned. (Court Reporter KF.) (JPL) (Entered: 02/15/2024)

Sam McCann was federally indicted on nine felony counts on February 3, 2021, alleging that from May 2015 to June 2020, McCann engaged in a scheme to convert more than $200,000 in contributions and donations made to his campaign committees to pay himself and make personal purchases, and that he concealed his fraud from donors, the public, the Illinois State Board of Elections and law enforcement authorities.

  • McCann allegedly used more than $60,000 in campaign funds to partially fund the purchases of a 2017 Ford Expedition in April 2017 and a 2018 Ford F-250 truck in July 2018, which he titled in his own name and used for his personal travel. McCann then used campaign funds for loan payments on the F-250 and for fuel and insurance expenses for both vehicles, while at the same time using campaign funds to reimburse mileage expense claims which he did not incur.
  • In April 2018, McCann allegedly used $18,000 in campaign funds to purchase a 2018 recreational travel trailer, and in May 2018, used $25,000 in campaign funds to buy a 2006 recreational motor home, both of which McCann titled in his personal name.
    McCann established an online account with a recreational vehicle rental business in Ohio and listed the vehicles for rent identifying Sam McCann as the owner. McCann then established a second account with the same rental business and identified himself as William McCann, a potential renter, with a different residential address and email than those he listed as the owner. From approximately May 2018 to June 2018, McCann, while representing himself as the renter, William, rented both the travel trailer and motor home from Sam, the owner, through the RV rental business. McCann caused a total of approximately $62,666 in campaign funds be used to pay the rental cost of the vehicles. The rental business retained approximately $9,838 for commission and paid McCann, as the owner, approximately $52,827 by direct deposit to McCann’s personal checking account. McCann reimbursed the campaign accounts $18,000, resulting in more than $77,000 in campaign funds used to buy and rent from himself.
  • On or about Oct. 4, 2016, McCann allegedly used a $20,000 cashier’s check funded by a campaign account and issued to himself to pay off a personal loan, including legal fees, that had originally been issued to him as an equipment loan in 2011 and was in collection by the bank due to non-payment.
  • From May 2015 to August 2020, McCann allegedly used campaign funds to pay approximately $64,750 on two separate personal mortgage loans that were secured by his former residence in Carlinville and an adjoining property used as an office for his construction business.
  • In November 2018, after an unsuccessful campaign for Governor of Illinois, when he was no longer a candidate for office and did not financially support any other candidate, and continuing to June 2020, McCann allegedly caused the Conservative Party of Illinois to issue approximately $187,000 in payments to himself personally and an additional $52,282 in payments for payroll taxes. Using a payroll service, McCann was allegedly able to conceal himself as the payee for the expenditures from the campaign account.
  • The indictment also alleges that approximately $50,000 in campaign funds were used for personal expenses including Green Dot credit card payments related to a family vacation in Colorado and other personal expenses, charges from Apple iTunes, Amazon, a skeet and trap club, Cabela’s, Scheels, Best Buy, a gun store, and cash withdrawals.

In addition to wire fraud and money laundering, the indictment charges McCann with one count of tax evasion related to his joint return for calendar year 2018. McCann allegedly failed to report income from his 2018 rental payments to himself for the RV trailer and motor home. In addition, in March 2018, McCann used a $10,000 check issued by a campaign account to make a down payment to a Shipman, Ill., business for a motor home. When the purchase was not completed, the business issued a $10,000 refund check payable to William McCann, which he deposited to his personal checking account and failed to report as income received.

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1 Comment
  • Xωρίς Όνομα
    Posted at 23:25h, 15 February Reply

    Nothing new here; Sam was just “carrying the torch” of …corruption which is inherent in IL and its politics/politicians. I find funny that the presiding judge’s name is …Lawless; how appropriate with McCann’s “style”. I hope he gets the max penalty and he has a most uncomfortable stay in the worst possible penitentiary.

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