Cari's downfall came after he assisted Stuart Levine, a corrupt trustee of the Illinois Teachers' Retirement System who was also convicted in the scandal, in an attempted extortion. Levine made a series of calls in 2004 to executives of JER Inc. demanding $850,000 — equal to 1 percent of the $85 million the Virginia investment firm was seeking from the teachers retirement board to invest. The firm, however, refused to pay. -- Chicago Tribune.So with teachers desperately trying to hang on to their meager pensions, as state politicians circle around like vultures, Cari and other Democratic Party rainmakers were using the fund as their own private profit center.
Cari, threw himself on the mercy of the court, pleading severe mental anguish and promising never to do it again. U.S District Judge Amy St. Eve bought Cari's story and spared him from prison, sentencing him to three years of probation, a small fine, and nine months of home confinement. Of course in Cari's case, "home confinement" means that he will be able to leave to go to work every day and even travel abroad on business.
After all, that's how things are done in Illinois.