Dem Rep. Derrick Smith Caught on Tape Taking a Bribe

Smith can be heard on the recording counting his cash

Tales from the tapes in State Rep. Derrick Smith corruption trial (Chicago Sun-Times)

State Rep. Derrick Smith endured a torrid day in court Monday as federal prosecutors presented their most damning evidence against him so far — a series of secretly-recorded conversations in which he appears to solicit a $7,000 bribe.

Heavily previewed in opening statements at the start of the West Side Democrat’s trial last week, the wiretapped conversations in which a laughing Smith refers to the alleged bribe as “cheddar” and vows, “I don’t let the left hand know what the right hand is doing” may yet prove fatal to his defense.

But they also suggested that organizing a bribe in Chicago politics isn’t as easy as some cynics might think.

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