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updated: 7/1/2014 8:13 AM

Appeals court upholds Beavers' tax conviction

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  • William Beavers

      William Beavers

Associated Press

A federal appeals court has upheld the tax-evasion conviction of a once-influential Chicago Democrat.

Monday's 26-page ruling from a three-judge panel is at least partly academic. Last month, former Cook County Commissioner William Beavers completed his six-month prison term for failing to declare campaign cash he used to gamble.

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His lawyers alleged multiple errors by trial Judge James Zagel. They say that included Zagel barring them from telling jurors Beavers fixed his tax returns after learning he was under investigation.

But the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals said belated attempts to correct false forms and refile isn't necessarily relevant to the initial crime.

During his quarter century in Chicago politics, the 79-year-old Beavers was known for bravado. Boasting about his influence, he once famously compared himself to a virile hog.

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