Nice to be Connected
- Gene Lee, a onetime top aide to former Mayor Richard Daley, has been a fixture in the civic life of Chicago’s Chinatown for more than four decades.
He organized the bustling neighborhood’s annual summer fair, marshaled resources for Chinese culture and the arts, and founded the Chicago Dragons Athletic Association, a sponsor of youth and adult basketball and traditional dancing and music credited with keeping underprivileged children off the streets.
But while Lee, 65, was busy promoting Chinatown, he was also stealing from the charities that were supposed to help the community, federal prosecutors say.
On Thursday, Lee was sentenced to five years of probation for stealing more than $90,000 from 2007 to 2010 and using much of it to pay for personal expenses such as suits, ties, travel and meals at fancy restaurants. The conviction -- Lee pleaded guilty in April to theft and filing a false tax return -- had nothing to do with his duties as a deputy chief of staff to Daley.
Hell, how much time did Blago get? And he never sniffed a dime.