Trucking company owner sentenced in Hired Truck case

| 1/20/2006

Another trucking company owner has been sentenced for his involvement in the ongoing federal investigation into Chicago’s scandal-ridden Hired Truck program.

On Thursday, Jan. 19, John Cannatello was sentenced to 27 months in prison, fined $14,000 and order to forfeit $100,000 in earnings he had received from Hired Truck. He pleaded guilty in December 2005.

Cannatello admitted to giving a bribe of between $1,000 and $5,000 to Donald Tomczak, former deputy commissioner of the city’s water department, in exchange for city work. Tomczak has already pleaded guilty to charges of racketeering and tax fraud.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Cannatello made about $325,000 in profits in one year from the lucrative city work.

To date, 39 individuals have been charged in the ongoing federal investigation into Hired Truck, in which city officials shook down trucking companies for bribes and campaign donations in exchange for lucrative city work. Twenty-seven people have either pleaded or have been found guilty, including 14 city workers, and 20 people have already been sentenced, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.