A Carbondale businessman will serve 16-months in federal prison for his part in a real-estate price-fixing scheme involving Madison County’s former Treasurer.
The U-S Attorney’s office says Barrett Rochman was sentenced Tuesday in East St. Louis District Court. He must also pay a 30-thousand dollar fine.
Rochman pleaded guilty back in October to taking part in a non-competitive tax sale involving former Madison County Treasurer Fred Bathon. Two other tax buyers from the metro-east area also pleaded guilty to the same pay-to-play charge. The tax sales took place between 2005 and 2008.
Bathon pleaded guilty last year to one count of bid-rigging. He was sentenced in December to two-and- a-half years in federal prison.
Authorities say Bathon's bid-rigging scheme steered interest rates on more than 25-hundred tax sale properties to the highest interest rate allowed under Illinois law - circumventing the competitive bidding process. According to plea agreements those bids were also awarded to his campaign contributors.