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February 7, 2011

ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN FILES SUIT TO TERMINATE PENSION OF FORMER CHICAGO POLICE CMDR. JON BURGE

Madigan Maintains Burgeís Felony Convictions Forfeit His Right to $3,000 Monthly Pension

Chicago ó Attorney General Lisa Madigan today filed a lawsuit against Jon Burge and the Retirement Board of the Policemenís Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago to immediately end the former Chicago Police commanderís pension benefits based on his convictions on three felony counts.

Madiganís suit, filed in Cook County Circuit Court, contends the Chicago police pension board has unlawfully allowed Burge to keep his more than $3,000 per month pension, despite felony convictions for lying about his knowledge of and participation in torture and abuse of suspects at the Chicago Police Departmentís Area Two.

The Attorney General contends Burgeís obstruction of justice and perjury convictions forfeited his right to a pension paid for by taxpayer dollars. Madiganís lawsuit seeks to immediately revoke pension payments to Burge and order the former commander to pay back any benefits paid to him since his January 21, 2011, sentencing.

ďJon Burge forfeited his right to a public pension when he lied about his knowledge of and participation in the torture and physical abuse of suspects,Ē Attorney General Madigan said. ďItís this type of criminal conduct by a public servant that our pension forfeiture laws were designed to discourage. The public should never have to pay for the retirement of a corrupt public official.Ē

Madiganís suit, which names Burge and the Chicago police pension board as defendants, cites the portion of the Illinois Pension Code that states no benefits shall be paid to any person convicted of a felony related to, arising out of or in connection with his service as a policeman.

Burgeís criminal indictment and felony convictions were based on statements he made in a 2003 civil case. In that case, Burge denied any knowledge of or participation in the torture or physical abuse of suspects at Area Two. The Attorney General maintains Burgeís denials, which led to his criminal convictions for perjury and obstruction of justice, were directly related to his service as a police officer. As a result, Madigan contends, Burge has forfeited his pension benefits.

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