County Treasurer Still Collecting Pension After Guilty Plea



A published report says the former Madison County treasurer who pleaded guilty to rigging property tax auctions still draws his $90,000 annual pension.
 
Fred Bathon pleaded guilty eight months ago to rigging 2005-2008 tax lien auctions so his political donors profited from inflated penalties paid by property owners. The Belleville News-Democrat reports the 58-year-old has received more than $340,000 in pension benefits since his 2009 retirement.
 
Kathy O'Brien of the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund says state law says a pension is terminated at sentencing, not conviction.
 
Bathon's attorney declined comment. Court records show Bathon's sentencing is Dec. 6.
 
Republican state Rep. Dwight Kay has promised to file a bill proposing terminating a public official's state pension at a guilty plea.
 
Three others, including southern Illinois businessman and investor Barrett Rochman, pleaded guilty in the scheme.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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