Monday, October 03, 2005

Richard Parillo and the Legal Defense Fund

The Tribune's coverage of the George Ryan/Larry Warner trial reports today on a trip to a 1995 Chicago Bulls playoff game:

"In addition to the casino trips, Fawell testified about a "bonzai" junket to a May 1995 Chicago Bulls playoff game in Orlando. Ryan, Fawell, Warner and several others took a quick trip to Walt Disney World and the Bulls game on a plane owned by Ryan's longtime supporter, insurance company owner Richard Parillo."

The story describes Parillo as a "longtime supporter" and an "insurance company owner" but does not identify him as the head of George Ryan's legal defense fund. Ryan announced the creation of a legal defense fund with a press release from the governor's office in 2002. And when ICPR pressed Ryan to make the fund abide by the same disclosure rules that cover campaign funds, we received a reply not from Ryan but from Richard Parillo. Click here to read his reply.

Note that, despite Ryan's promises to release the names of donors by December 1, 2002 (and annually thereafter) and Parillo's promise to run the trust "with the utmost integrity", the names of donors have never been released.

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