(edited the title, fixed name of Tribune's blog)
Jerry Weller (IL-11), who's father-in-law was a genocidal dictator in Guatemala, and all around bad man is the subject of a Chicago Tribune expose into his Central American land deals.
The Tribune's The Swamp Blog reports:
...Weller has invested heavily in 12 acres of lush hillside overlooking the Pacific surf in southwest Nicaragua...
Weller, though, has not always reported the full extent of his investment – which is required by congressional ethics rules – on his yearly financial disclosure forms. At least twice, he listed much lower sale prices for land on official documents in Nicaragua than he listed on congressional forms.
So, the son-in-law of General Efrain Zios Montt has shady land deals in Nicaragua. He reports one thing to the electorate of this country, and totally different thing to the authorities in Nicaragua.
Not only that, but The Swamp says that Weller failed to report this as a conflict of interest when he was helping write the CAFTA deal. His wife, Zury Rios Montt, was also a negotiator for the Guatemalan government, where she is a member of the Legislature. CAFTA, not surprisingly, includes language that protects Weller's land investments in Nicaragua.
The Trib's full story is even more damning:
For example, Weller's first disclosed purchase in the coastal town of San Juan del Sur appeared on his 2002 financial filing, listing a lot with a purchase price of between $50,001 and $100,000. But in property records at the Registrar's office in Rivas, the department seat for San Juan, Weller is reported paying 78,000 cordobas, or about $4,333, for four-tenths of an acre in a transaction on Dec. 7, 2002.
Records indicate that Weller sold the same property in February 2005 for about $95,000. That sale does not appear on Weller's 2005 House disclosure.
Weller's been avoiding the Tribune's reporters, and has yet to comment.
There's a lot more in the article. Jerry Weller is an all around bad guy. I am originally from the district he represents. Friends and family regularly ask me when we're going to do something about Weller (we being Democrats, "something about" being to push him out of office).
Well, Weller has a potential opponent. I don't know much about the guy, and it looks like he doesn't even have a website up, but maybe a strong candidate will emerge. For now, here's something on Weberfrom Prariestateblue.