Published: Wed, July 19, 2017
World Media | By Joan Schultz

Former US House Speaker Freed

Former US House Speaker Freed

- Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has left a Minnesota federal prison where he spent the last 13 months for breaking the law while trying to hide his past sexual abuse of teenage boys, according to a Chicago Sun-Times report.

Hastert pleaded guilty a year ago to violating money laundering laws in a case that shocked the country and Beltway insiders. Then, during his sentencing hearing in April 2016, he admitted to the judge that he sexually abused children in the 1970s while he was a wrestling coach at Yorkville High School.

Hastert did not face sex-related charges because prosecutors said the statute of limitations had long expired. He is set to be released from custody August 16.

Hastert is now being supervised by a residential re-entry management field office based in Chicago, after serving 13 months of his 15-month sentence.

Technically, Hastert was brought down for violating federal banking laws.

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What began as a look into questionable financial transactions eventually lead investigators to unearth a sexual abuse cover-up by former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert. He has repeatedly declined comment, but his wife acknowledged her husband is a victim.

At the time, Hastert said he was "deeply ashamed" and said, "I know why I am here".

In addition to the prison sentence, Hastert also was eventually ordered to pay $250,000 to a victims fund.

His inmate number with the Bureau of Prisons is 47991-424. "And we got quite a bit of information that ultimately resulted in one of the charges against him, which was lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation".

Prosecutors went into graphic detail about the sex-abuse allegations, even describing how Hastert would sit in a recliner in the locker room with a direct view of the showers. He has since sued Hastert in a Kendall County breach-of-contract lawsuit seeking the remaining $1.8 million - plus accrued interest - he argues Hastert owes him. The former IL congressman served as House speaker from 1999-2007, the longest-serving occupant of the post second in line to the presidency.

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