Alleged victim of ex-U.S. House Speaker Hastert to testify at sentencing

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 13, 2016 4:52 PM

By Mark Weinraub

CHICAGO (Reuters) - An alleged victim of sexual abuse by former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and the sister of another accuser will testify at the sentencing hearing of the former Illinois congressman, the U.S. Attorney's Office prosecuting the case said on Wednesday.

The alleged victim, known as individual D, and Jolene Burdge, whose brother died in 1995, were the only two witnesses scheduled to speak for the prosecution, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

The two will likely read from prepared statements. No special arrangements were requested to ensure privacy in the courtroom, the spokesman said.

Also on Wednesday, a judge ordered that the defense's response to the government's pre-sentence report, which detailed the allegations against Hastert, be unsealed.

The defense's response said that Hastert had no recollection of the allegations made by individual D, who told prosecutors that Hastert performed a sexual act on him during a massage when he was 17.

Hastert was convicted last year of a financial crime in a hush-money case. He faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison. The sentencing of Hastert, who once stood among the most powerful men in the country, is scheduled for April 27.

(Reporting by Mark Weinraub)