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Fourth echelon

Indictment: Ex-House speaker Hastert averted bank laws to pay 'hush money'

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WASHINGTON, May 28 (UPI) -- The longest-serving Republican Speaker of the House in U.S. history was indicted by a federal grand jury Thursday, for allegedly violating banking laws in an effort to pay off a person who accused the former congressman of "past misconduct."

John Dennis Hastert, the house speaker from 1999 to 2007, is accused of violating U.S. banking laws that require the disclosure of all cash transactions that exceed $10,000, the indictment said.

According to the court document, Hastert was paying the money to the unnamed individual to "compensate for and conceal" the unspecified past misconduct. In the course of the payments, Hastert supposedly made numerous cash withdrawals from four different bank accounts without notifying proper officials, as required by law.

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