Category Archives: Quinshaunta Golden

Another Blagojevich Crook Pleads Guilty

A press release from Springfield’s U.S. Attorney’s Office:

FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF FOR ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH PLEADS GUILTY TO BRIBERY AND TAKING KICKBACKS, OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE

Springfield, Ill. – A former Chief of Staff for the Illinois Department of Public Health, Quinshaunta R. Golden, pled guilty today to bribery and taking kickbacks related to $13 million in grant and contract funds awarded at Golden’s direction and to obstructing justice in a federal grand jury investigation.

The Illinois Public Health Department complex.
The Illinois Public Health Department complex.

Golden appeared before U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough in Springfield. Sentencing for Golden has been scheduled for Aug. 18, 2014.

Golden, 45, of Homewood, Ill., served as Chief of Staff at the Ill. Department of Public Health from 2003 to early 2008. In that capacity, Golden had significant control over the agency’s offices and had certain approval authority and control over the awarding of grants and contracts.

In 2008, Golden left the Department of Public Health and took a position at the University of Chicago Medical Center.

During today’s hearing and according to court documents, Golden admitted that from August 2006 to at least October 2008, she used her position to cause the agency to issue approximately $11 million in grant funds, for programs relating to

  • breast, cervical and prostate cancer
  • HIV/AIDS
  • emergency preparedness

to three not-for-profit organizations:

  • Broadcast Ministers Alliance
  • Access Wellness and Racial Equity
  • the Medical HealthAssociation

These organizations were then controlled by Leon Dingle, Jr., and his for-profit corporation known as Advance Health, Social and Educational Associates, Inc.

As part of the scheme, Golden caused Individual A to be hired as a paid consultant for Leon Dingle, Jr., and the three not-for-profit entities, as well as a paid consultant for an entity identified as Security Firm A.

As a result, approximately $772,500 in grant funds, originally disbursed to the three not-for-profit entities, was paid to Individual A from July 2007 to April 2008, including approximately $407,500 paid to Individual A in April 2008 alone, at the end of Golden’s tenure at the Department of Public Health.

As a condition of Individual A receiving grant funds, Golden admitted that she required Individual A to pay her one-half of whatever Individual A received, less any funds to be withheld for payment of taxes, which were never paid.

In addition, Golden caused approximately $2 million in contract funds to be paid by the Department of Public Health to Security Firm A to conduct background checks and interviews of Illinois nursing home residents related to the Identified Offender Program.

Golden required Individual A to pay Golden kickback payments for each background investigation performed by Security Firm A.

Golden admitted that from February to April 2012, she persuaded and attempted to persuade Individual A, a material witness, with the intent to obstruct an official grand jury investigation in the Central District of Illinois. Golden met with Individual A on multiple occasions and falsely denied receiving improper kickback payments from A. Golden then admitted to Individual A that she caused grants to be issued to certain vendors and to Individual A, but encouraged and instructed Individual A not to tell the truth concerning the kickback scheme and to conceal the truth from A’s attorney, and to create a false story by saying that Individual A used the grant and contract funds for gambling and other personal expenses.

At sentencing, according to the terms of the plea agreement, the government has agreed to recommend to the court a sentence at the low end of the applicable advisory sentencing guidelines. The government agrees that calculation of the advisory sentencing guideline range would result in the government recommending a sentence of no higher than 121 months in prison. The defendant remains free to challenge the calculation and to recommend whatever sentence the defendant deems appropriate.

In the related but separate case,

  • Leon Dingle, Jr., his wife Karin, both of Chicago,

and two associates,

  • Jacquelyn Kilpatrick, of Phoenix, Ill., and
  • Edmond Clemons, of the same Phoenix address,

were indicted in October 2012, on charges that they used millions of dollars in grant funds awarded by the Ill. Department of Public Health to grant recipients for their personal benefit and to pay personal expenses. Trial in this case is currently scheduled for June 3, 2014, before Senior U.S. District Judge Richard Mills in Springfield.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Central District of Illinois U.S. Attorney Jim Lewis expressed his appreciation to the federal law enforcement officers assigned and the agencies who support the Central District of Illinois U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Public Corruption Task Force: Tony Gomez, Postal Inspector in Charge, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Chicago Division; James Lee, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Chicago Field Office; and Jim Burns, Inspector General, Illinois Secretary of State Office of Inspector General. Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy A. Bass is prosecuting the case on behalf of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of Illinois.

Individuals who wish to provide information to law enforcement regarding matters of alleged public corruption are urged to call the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 217-492-4450.

Blago Public Health Department Appointee Faces Kickback Indictment on $13 Million for Grants & Contracts

A press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Springfield:

FORMER ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH CHIEF OF STAFF CHARGED WITH BRIBERY AND TAKING KICKBACKS, MAIL FRAUD, OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE

 To Date:  13 Defendants Charged in Ongoing State Grant / Contract Fraud Investigation

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – An indictment returned yesterday by a grand jury in Springfield charges Quinshaunta R. Golden, former Chief of Staff for the Illinois Department of Public Health, with

  • bribery and
  • taking kickbacks of approximately $433,000 in grant and contract funds,
  • mail fraud, and
  • obstructing justice in a federal investigation

The indictment alleges that from about July 2007 to October 2008, Golden received kickbacks related to $13 million in grant and contract funds awarded at Golden’s direction to various entities.

Further, the indictment alleges that from about February to early April 2012, Golden engaged in conduct to obstruct and impede a grand jury investigation in the Central District of Illinois.

U.S. Attorney James A. Lewis.
U.S. Attorney James A. Lewis.

The U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois, Jim Lewis, announced the indictment today, along with Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy A. Bass, who is representing the government in the prosecution, and representatives of the investigative agencies that participate in the U.S. Attorney’s Public Corruption Task Force: Tony Gomez, Postal Inspector in Charge, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Chicago Division; James Lee, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, Chicago Field Office; and Jim Burns, Inspector General, Illinois Secretary of State Office of Inspector General.

Golden is the 13th defendant to be charged, to date, as a result of the ongoing task force investigation of state grant/contract fraud.

The Chicago Sun-Times reveals that defendant is a former Chief of Staff for now-President Barack Obama.
The Chicago Sun-Times reveals that defendant Quinshaunta R. Golden is a former Chief of Staff for now-President Barack Obama.

Charges filed against these 13 defendants collectively allege the misuse of more than $16 million in taxpayers’ money intended to provide a wide range of

  • healthcare
  • student assistance
  • job training programs and services to disadvantaged citizens

These include programs

  • to promote wellness and improve healthcare
  • to prepare for major health and natural disaster emergencies
  • to provide healthcare advocacy programs and student job training assistance
  • to provide skill training and apprenticeships
  • to provide statewide HIV prevention plans and HIV/AIDS facilities to assist African Americans.

See summary table below for the complete list of defendants charged and case status.

Summary of Springfield official corruption cases.
Summary of Springfield official corruption cases.

According to the indictment, Golden, 44, of Homewood, Ill., served as Chief of Staff at the Ill. Department of Public Health from 2003 to early 2008.

In that capacity, Golden had significant control over the agency’s offices and had certain approval authority and control over the awarding of grants and contracts.

In 2008, Golden left the Department of Public Health and took a position at the University of Chicago Medical Center.

The indictment alleges that, as part of the scheme, Golden used her position at the Department of Public Health to cause the agency to issue approximately $11 million in grant funds, for programs relating to

  • breast, cervical and prostate cancer
  • HIV/AIDS
  • emergency preparedness

to three not-for-profit organizations:

  1. Broadcast Ministers Alliance
  2. Access Wellness and Racial Equity
  3. the Medical Health Association

These organizations were then controlled by Leon Dingle, Jr., and his for-profit corporation known as Advance Health, Social and Educational Associates, Inc.

Dingle, his wife, and two associates were indicted in October 2012; trial is scheduled for December 2013.

The Chicago Tribune also wrote and article.
The Chicago Tribune also wrote and article.

Further, Golden allegedly caused approximately $2 million in contract funds to be paid by the Department of Public Health to an entity referred to in the indictment as Security Firm A for services related to the Identified Offender Program to conduct background checks and interviews of Illinois nursing home residents.

As part of the scheme, Golden allegedly caused a person, identified as Individual A in the indictment, to be hired as a paid consultant for Leon Dingle, Jr., and the three not-for-profit entities, as well as a paid consultant for Security Firm A.

As a result, approximately $772,500 in grant funds, originally disbursed to the three not-for-profit entities, was paid to Individual A during a nine-month period from July 2007 to April 2008, including approximately $407,500 paid to Individual A in April 2008, at the end of Golden’s tenure at the Department of Public Health.

The indictment alleges that Golden required, as a condition of Individual A receiving grant funds, that Individual A pay Golden one-half of whatever Individual A received, less any funds to be withheld for payment of taxes, which were never paid.

From about July 2007 to April 2008, Individual A made cash payments to Golden in amounts ranging from $5,000 to as much as $70,000, totaling approximately $323,500.

Under the Identified Offender Program, the indictment alleges that Golden required Individual A to pay Golden approximately $35 to $40 for each background investigation performed by Security Firm A.

From 2006 to 2009, Individual A received approximately $485,000 in funds from Security Firm A’s contracts with DPH, and during 2007 and 2008, Individual A allegedly paid Golden approximately $109,500.

Two days after the indictment was handed down, the Chicago Sun- Times plays up the connection to President Barack Obama again.
Two days after the indictment was handed down, the Chicago Sun-
Times plays up the connection to President Barack Obama again.

In addition to the charges of bribery and taking kickbacks and mail fraud (five counts), the indictment charges Golden with one count of obstruction of justice.

Golden allegedly met with Individual A on multiple occasions and falsely denied receiving improper kickback payments from A.

Further, the indictment alleges that Golden encouraged and instructed Individual A not to tell the truth concerning the kickback scheme and to conceal the truth from Individual A’s attorney, and to create a false story by saying that Individual A used the grant and contract funds for gambling and other personal expenses.

The indictment includes one count of criminal forfeiture seeking forfeiture of property Golden derived from any proceeds obtained as a result of the alleged offenses, as well as a money judgment in an undetermined amount representing the net proceeds obtained as a result of the alleged offenses.

If convicted, for the offense of bribery and theft concerning programs receiving federal funds, the statutory penalty is up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.  For each count of mail fraud (five counts) and for the single count of obstruction of justice, the statutory penalty is up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000 as to each count.  The defendant may also be ordered to pay restitution to victims of the alleged offenses.

The U.S. Clerk of the Court will issue a summons to Golden for her initial appearance date, scheduled for Aug. 23, 2013, at 11:00 a.m., before U.S. Magistrate Judge Byron G. Cudmore in federal court in Springfield.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; each defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Individuals who wish to provide information to law enforcement regarding matters of public corruption are urged to call the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 217-492-4450.